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Opinions & Interviews

12 Nov 2015

U.S. expert: Belarus plays an increasingly important role in the regional context

MINSK, 12 November (BelTA) – Belarus plays an increasingly important role in the regional context, Jamestown Foundation President Glen Howard said during the international conference held on 12 November to discuss frozen conflicts in the post-Soviet space, BelTA has learned. The conference has been organized within the framework of the Minsk Dialogue initiative.

“The more often I visit Belarus, the more I realize that it is a wonderful country and that it plays a very important part. Given the regional context, its role is becoming even more significant,” Glen Howard stressed. He also pointed out that many newsmaking events take place in Belarus today.

“Belarus’ geopolitical role has increased. Western politicians are starting to realize how important the geopolitical role of this country is,” the expert stressed. He pointed out that Belarus has become a facilitator in the Ukraine crisis negotiations that involve Russia, Ukraine, Germany, and France.

Glen Howard also emphasized Belarus’ role as an exporter of potassium. “Today it sells potash fertilizers to many countries, including the United States. Belarus is an important actor in the global economy. Its potash exports are shipped via the Lithuanian port of Klaipeda, which means a certain level of cooperation with the Baltic states,” he said.

Belarus is making steps to improve its relations with the United States. “These relations are at the development stage,” Glen Howard noted. He added that Belarus is a trade corridor between the East and the West and hopes to remain such. In this context, the United States also makes efforts to enhance its relations with Belarus.

As for military affairs, Belarus is not in NATO but is a member of the Collective Security Treaty Organization. The expert believes Belarus will remain a peaceful state.

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