Minsk - Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko has said he believes any attempts to arrange a revolution in the country similar to what happened recently in a number of Arab countries are hopeless.
“You’ll never see it. Belarus is not the Middle East, and the Belarusian leadership’s and the Middle Eastern leaders’ policies differ radically. Some here tried to blow up the situation, but nothing came of it. Nothing of the sort will ever happen, I promise you,” Lukashenko said in an interview with Reuters, excerpts of which the presidential press service has published.
“If someone thinks revolutionary changes will happen here, this won’t happen. Belarus has exhausted its limit of revolutions, and therefore it’s necessary to be patient and calmly make these changes for the better. We welcome evolutionary changes, but there will never be revolutions here,” Lukashenko said.
He also said he believes relations between Belarus and the EU could be normalized, but this will happen without Europe’s diktat and sanctions.
“We have already made so many steps at the European Union’s and some EU political figures’ demands that we could have run or walked 10 kilometers. But we haven’t seen any steps to meet us halfway,” he said.
“So make conclusions. We are ready, but don’t come to us for negotiations and set terms. We have already complied with dozens of these terms. They were set to me, and I fulfilled them. What we had in response is tougher sanctions,” he said.
Lukashenko also dismissed demands that all convicts whom the West considers political prisoners be released.
“What are these sanctions for? They say we have some political prisoners. Okay, come here and show me a single political prisoner. But come here as specialists, not as journalists,” he said.
Lukashenko also pointed out that there is a pardon system stipulated by the law.
“You have to address the president to be pardoned. I pardoned everyone who addressed me, although they didn’t deserve to be released. One or two didn’t, they say it’s better for them to be in jail to be seen as heroes. Fine, be in jail,” Lukashenko said.
“Who could have thought that Europe depends on Belarus? You started imposing sanctions, and then I said openly and honestly that we would respond not symmetrically but asymmetrically,” he said.