This night three train goods wagons, filled with spare parts from the radar stations “Kolchuga”, were driven to the territory of Ukraine from Belarus (via the “Yarlovichi-Slavutich customs station), and allocated on the military site in the Chernigov region. BYT leader Yulia Timoshenko has reportedly said that during the joint press-conference of the leaders of the action “Rise up, Ukraine!”, held in Kiev. The woman referred to the data, received from six different sources, including from customs officers and soldiers. These actions by the Ukrainian military men are caused by the fact that today Ukraine is supposed to notify the USA that all “Kolchugas”, which need to be in the country, are there.
Russia is ready to consider any type of integration with Belarus, said on Friday in an interview to the newspaper “Obozrevatel” Russian ambassador in Belarus Alexander Blokhin. According to him, Russia is ready to integrate “as soon and as deep as Belarus feels like”. Speaking of the integration variants (full merger, incorporation by Russia, EU type) Blokhin stressed that any of these variants suit Russia all right. The unification accord “is quite flexible, allowing us to fill in the niche between these variants”, said he. At the same time the ambassador underscored that it is necessary to create a clear legal construction, “comprehensible both to Russia, Belarus and the rest of the world”.
Belarus` controversial and authoritarian president Alexander Lukashenko has called for his country to step up its commercial ties with Iraq. The timing of the announcement is impeccable for attracting greater attention and international criticism, which is all this increasingly bizarre president seems good for these days. Belarus` ties with Iraq are so far limited by the framework of the UN oil-for-food program, but Lukashenko has said his country would like to do more. He said Belarus has US$300m-worth of contracts ready to sign with the pariah country, but UN approval is not forthcoming. It has been alleged that Belarus smuggled arms to Iraq in defiance of UN sanctions. In 2001 Belarus exported almost US$26m-worth of goods and has identified more projects in Iraq`s oil, health and agriculture industries.
The most popular Polish newspaper “Gazeta Wyborcha” together with the private TV company “Polsat” launched campaign in support of the Belarusian journalists, convicted for criticizing Lukashenko. On October 11 “Polsat” viewers will manage to watch the forth program, dedicated to the freedom of speech situation in Belarus, including video reports from the place of confinement of Pavel Mozheiko and Nikolai Markevich. The newspaper has already gathered around 1000 signatures under an appeal to Alexander Lukashenko, demanding to liberate the incarcerated journalists and cancel the Penal Code’s provisions, which prohibit to criticize the authorities. Meantime, the newspaper’s reporter in Minsk Tsezary Golinsky has already received his first phone threat.
The case of the former director of the Minsk Tractor Plant Mikhail Leonov comprises more than 50 volumes, while the investigation period was prolonged by an extra three months. It could well be that the investigation will totally last for 1,5 years.
The court of the Central district of Minsk punished Mariya Vyatkina by a huge fine – 1mln 600thsd rubles (around $1000) for picketing in support of the religious minorities in Belarus. Previously, the court had already sentenced another 8 participants of the same event.
The credit line has been opened for a 3-year period at 13% annual interest rate. MTS Board of Directors has approved of the guarantee agreement signed by MTS and the Bank of Moscow. Under the agreement, MTS undertakes to guarantee MTS LTD credit obligations to the Bank of Moscow. MTS Board of Directors has also approved of the agreement with the Belarusian operator, MTS LTD, for compensation of possible losses and risks connected with the guarantee.
Press-secretary of the Belarusian Foreign Ministry Pavel Latushko declared at yesterday’s briefing the start of the consultations between the permanent representatives of Belarus and Portugal in OSCE. The official said that the Belarusian ambassador Viktor Gaichenok met with the representative of the OSCE Secretariat and the Organization’s Chairman-in-Office. Meantime, the spokesman of the Portuguese representation in OSCE Antonio Kapinya didn’t confirm this information: “I don’t have any data in this regard and can’t confirm the start of any negotiations. Portugal is waiting for the Belarusian authorities to come up with some concrete proposals. We intend, given no progress is achieved, to raise the issue at the following Permanent Council’s session,” – said in an interview to the Radio Svaboda the Portuguese diplomat.
Secretary general of the Communist party of Vietnam Nong Dyk Man is currently on his way to Minsk. His official visit will take place on October 13-15. The Foreign Ministry reports that the Vietnamese leader will be personally welcomed by Alexander Lukashenko. The high official will also meet with the heads of the “national assembly” Alexander Voitovich and Vadim Popkov, as well as with the first deputy of the Belarusian Prime Minister Sergei Sidorsky. Head of the Vietnamese delegation will visit the Minsk car plant and the memorial complex “Khatyn”.