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WikiLeaks: Lukashenka can't be corrected


Infamous website learned about the “political games” the Belorussian dictator is playing.

The “Russkiy reporter” was informed about it and got hold of the USA State Department correspondence regarding Belarus.

The documents provided by the WikiLeaks website show how artfully Aliaksandr Lukashenka sells his anti-Russian sentiments trying to get some political support and financial help from the western countries.

«Russia provoked the war in Georgia»

The direct encounter of Aliaksandr Lukashenka with Urmas Paet, Estonia Foreign Minister, in October, 2009 turned out to be very frank. The meeting report indicates: «Having reassured Paet that Estonia has never been his enemy Lukashenka spent most of the 90-minute meeting attacking Russia claiming that Minsk can be made to acknowledge South Osetia and Abhazia independence this winter in exchange to cheap gas from Russia as well as claiming that Russia provoked the war in Georgia».

Lukashenka also gave to understand that he tries to refrain from public pro-Georgian moves. Thus he received an invitation from Mikhail Saakashvili to visit Georgia but «haven't done that as didn't want to annoy Kremlin».

It's obvious from the talk that Lukashenka refused to acknowledge Abhazia and South Osetia independence having in mind to receive financial help from the EU in return: «Lukashenka claimed that he prefers Belarus being independent and was especially distressed that the EU didn't issue a loan for the reforms or him not acknowledging South Osetia and Abhazia».

This made Lukashenka consider a cooperation with the EU. As a typical example Lukashenka “claimed that the Ukraine executed multiple reforms in order for the EU and NATO to “like” it but as a result the Ukraine is no closer to the membership in these organizations than earlier and besides is going through an economic and political crisis”.

Lukashenka hoped that the “Nordstream” project fails

«Lukashenka approved of the anti-Russian tone during the meeting, - is mentioned in a USA State Department report, - Lukashenka said he hoped Finland, Sweden and Denmark wouldn't allow building the Nordstream pipeline». Lukashenka viewed the gas pipeline Yamal II going through the territory of Belarus as a replacement for this project and claimed that its construction would be 10 times cheaper than laying the “Nordstream” through the Baltic sea bottom.

On the whole it's obvious from the documents that Aliaksandr Lukashenka tries to dialogue actively at least with the neighbor western-orientated countries – meeting reports on Lukashenka's visits to Kyiv and Vilnus prove that. Having at first viewed the “orange revolution” in the Ukraine as a personal threat Lukashenka managed to organize a dialogue with Viktar Yuschenka at a certain moment and the former Ukrainian administration used that. «The strategic aim of top-level meeting was in encouraging Lukashenka to develop a multiple-vector foreign policy and weaning him from Russia. One of the analysts also told us that …both countries were the victims of Russian “gas wars” and the Ukraine has a chance to profit from winning Belarus for the unofficial group that consists of GUAM countries, Baltics and Poland».

The USA State Secretary, Hilary Clinton used another argument for changing the orientation of Belarus foreign policy in her dispatch for Belarus embassy: «The Belarus government should be aware that it's more important for Belarus to have better relationship with us than for us to have better relationship with Belarus. The Belarus dependence on the changeable Russian market means that its opportunities for economic growth lie in the West (according to the Belarus government statistics the EU is the largest foreign market of Belarus on the whole now)».

Lukashenka considered Medvedev to be equal to Putin

Some reasons of the latest Russian-Belarusian conflicts become clear from the USA State Department correspondence as well. As everyone knows at a certain moment Lukashenka began an open confrontation with Vladimir Putin betting on the relationship with Dmitriy Medvedev. A quotation from the report on the Aliaksandr Lukashenka's visit to Vilnus: «Ushazcas (Lithuania foreign minister - “RR”) asked for Lukashenka's opinion about the leadership in Russia. Lukashenka said that he thought Medvedev strengthened his positions and his power wasn't less than Putin's». Thus Lukashenka tried to trade on possible controversies between Putin and Medvedev but made a mistake – either Putin's position turned out to be stronger, or he and Dmitriy Medvedev shared their view on the relationship with Belarus. A serious conflict between Lukashenka and Dmitriy Medvedev as well turned out to result from this.

Lukashenka can't be corrected

The diplomatic correspondence shows that trying to get closer with the Western countries Aliaksandr Lukashenka rejects severely all the attempts to soften his domestic policy. Hilary Clinton notes: «Both Head of President's Administration, Uladzimir Makei, and Foreign Minister, Siargei Martynau, said that Belarus would like to improve the relationship with the West ans that government was going to reform domestic policy. [But] everything we heard turned out to be vague rhetoric without any obligations».

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