Belarus expects partnership with Russia to help it withstand EU pressure

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Aug. 15, 2012, 3:41 p.m. | Ukraine — by Interfax-Ukraine


Belarusian Foreign Minister Sergei Martynov believes successful cooperation between Minsk and Moscow and relations between the two countries within the Customs Union, the Common Economic Area and the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) will help Belarus withstand the European Union's pressure.

"Forms of support on Russia's part are obvious to us: first of all these are our partner relations and relations within the framework of the Customs Union and the Common Economic Area, and this is an opportunity for Belarus to successfully maintain its economic activity," Martynov said at a news conference in Minsk on Wednesday.

Belarus's work with Russia within the CSTO format is also an important supporting factor, he said.

Martynov said Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and he had discussed the EU's pressure on Belarus at their consultations in Minsk on August 14-15.

"Belarus does not accept the policy of threats, sanctions and blackmail," but it favors constructive dialogue in all areas of its foreign political cooperation, he said.

The European Union is Belarus's third biggest trade partner, and therefore Minsk expects more active economic relations with the EU countries, he said.

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