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Opinions & Interviews

21 Nov 2013

Makei: Russia is Belarus’ closest ally and strategic partner

Makei: Russia is Belarus’ closest ally and strategic partner

MINSK, 21 November (BelTA) - Russia is Belarus’ closest ally and strategic partner, Belarusian Foreign Minister Vladimir Makei told the Polish newspaper Dziennik Gazeta Prawna, BelTA has learnt.

“Russia is our closest ally and strategic partner. Such is the objective reality. Russia supplies hydrocarbons to our country at affordable prices. Russia’s share in Belarus' foreign trade is 49% (the EU accounts for 29%),” Vladimir Makei underscored.

Vladimir Makei also noted that some conflicts do happen between the two countries, as between any partners. “There were several of such conflicts, or as news media dubbed them ‘wars’: ‘gas and milk wars’. However, compromise solutions were found in all these conflicts,” the Foreign Minister said.

He noted that the peoples of Belarus and Russia maintain close and brotherly relations. Over 150 agreements are in effect between the countries. Belarusian and Russian citizens have equal rights to education and healthcare in both Belarus and Russia. We do not need visas to visit each and we feel at home when we cross the border. Political cooperation is gaining momentum. Participation in integration projects is natural, too. “You know it is difficult to confront challenges alone, especially for such middle-sized states as Belarus,” Vladimir Makei stressed.

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