“The chamber of representatives” has decided to postpone discussion on the subject of South Ossetia and Abkhazia recognition till spring, as “it is not pressing and not simple”.
The issue of recognition of South Ossetia and Abkhazia recognition can be considered by the “parliament” of Belarus at the spring session, but before that consequences of adopting this anything but simple decision should be carefully studied from the point of view of Belarusian-Russian relations’ development and the situation around non-recognized territories in the former USSR, Belarusian “deputies” believe.
“I think that over the next year a variant of this problem’s solution would be found. But we must take into account that this problem touches upon not only these two republics,” the chairman of the Budget and Finances Commission of the “council of representatives” of the “national assembly”, former speaker of the “chamber of representatives” Vadzim Papou, said in an interview to Interfax.
To his mind, “today Moldova, Armenia and Azerbaijan watch these processes with concern”. “The problem of Kosovo hasn’t been taken off from the agenda as well”, Papou said. In this connection, as said by him, “adopting this or that decision on Abkhazia and South Ossetia, we should take into account the whole spectrum of problems which could emerge in the future in relation to the non-recognized territories. Will it cause any explosive attempts and actions from other non-recognized territories which are abundant?” the head of the commission noted.
In this case, Papou believes, “the most important thing is not to serve as a detonator for these negative processes, and such misgivings exist”. “With all our respect to these nations [Abkhazia and South Ossetia], we should approach these political issues in a very balanced and careful way, in order not to make a real mess of things in the long term,” he stated.
The head of the commission of the upper chamber of the Belarusian “parliament” underlined that “the fact of these states’ independence recognition by the parliament and the state is a rather complicated process”. Meanwhile, Papou said that “the work on studying this issue, communications and discussion are underway”. As said by the “deputy”, the new convocation of the “parliament” hasn’t had time for submitting it for consideration as addresses of the parliaments of South Ossetia and Abkhazia had been received by Minsk late.
In his turn, the head of the “chamber of representatives’” commission on international affairs and CIS ties Syarhei Maskevich stated that “if there would be no extraordinary situations to call a special session, I see no reasons for postponement of consideration of this issue at the next session which is to be opened on April 2”. “They [South Ossetia and Abkhazia] addressed our “parliament” late, so we didn’t see no reason to response to these addresses with the utmost promptness,” Maskevich said.
He believes that “any consequences for future existence of these republics won’t depend on Belarus’ decision”. “Whether Belarus recognizes independence of these republics or won’t consider this matter, these republics are outside Georgia now, and are to remain outside Georgia in the nearest historical time interval”, Maskevich stated.
Earlier Alyaksandr Lukashenka said in an interview to foreign mass media that Russia does not push Belarus to recognize independence of South Ossetia and Abkhazia. “There is no pressure. And it is futile to press on us,” Lukashenka said. As said by him, if there was pressure on Belarus, “there would be an opposite effect”. “That is why to say that somebody is pushing us is a total absurd and silliness. Russia has never pushed us in this respect,” Lukashenka underlined. He also noted that “we are to solve this issue proceeding from our procedures. The new parliament is to come, and I will submit this issue to their decision. Let them discuss it like in Russia and express their opinion,” the Belarusian president said.
He said however that as the West had recognized Kosovo, “why Abkhazia cannot be recognized then”. “I think that very many are ready to admit that a precedent has been set, and an example has been demonstrated,” Lukashenka noted.
Meanwhile, Russian ambassador to Belarus Alexander Surikov said on November 22 to Interfax West agency that Russia expects the Belarusian “parliament” to consider the issue of recognition of South Ossetia and Abkhazia’s independence. “It was stated that the issue of recognition or non-recognition of South Ossetia and Abkhazia would be studies by the newly elected parliament of Belarus. In this connection we are waiting when they start considering it,” the ambassador said.