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Lukashenko: Crimea is part of Russia now

March 23, 12:48 UTC+3 MINSK
"You can recognise or not to recognise this, but this will not change anything”, Belarusian President said
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© ITAR-TASS/Alexey Druzhinin

MINSK, March 23. /ITAR-TASS/. Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko stated that today the Republic of Crimea was de facto part of Russia and noted that no one urged him to recognize or not to recognize Crimean referendum.

“As for recognition or not recognition, Crimea is part of Russia today. You can recognise or not to recognise this, but this will not change anything,” Lukashenko told reporters in the Belarusian capital on Sunday.

MINSK, March 23, 14:23 /ITAR-TASS/. Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko finds statements by Ukrainian politicians over possible withdrawal from the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) short-sighted and urged Ukraine to stay in the CIS.

“I believe that those who influence Ukrainian policy will not take these steps. Why to shut the door closed,” Lukashenko told reporters in the Belarusian capital on Sunday.

The Belarusian president noted that he would propose “to several Ukrainian politicians to discuss this problem.” “I ask not to make thoughtless steps,” he said, noting that “Ukraine’s walkout from the CIS will be a strong blow to the CIS.” “A strong, but not lethal one,” the Belarusian president noted.

Alexander Lukashenko also assessed negatively events in Ukraine, but he noted that Belarus was prepared to establish relations with the Ukrainian leadership which would be elected at forthcoming elections. “We will be building relations with those whom people elect,” he said. “All that happened and is happening in Ukraine is disgusting for me and I do not like this. I take those processes that are taking place there very painfully,” the Belarusian president noted. Ukrainian events can be named “a revolutionary coup, unconstitutional power overthrow,” he noted, adding that “this is not normal when legitimate authorities are toppled this way.”

Meanwhile, Lukashenko believes that today “only politicians divide Ukraine into western and eastern.” The Belarusian leader named the language problem as one of reasons for current tense situation. “Why it was needed to press on Russian speakers, why to manhunt and exert pressure on people,” the president said. “Just imagine that tomorrow you will be banned to speak Russian or Belarusian,” Lukashenko added.

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