6th Forum of Regions of Belarus and Russia in St Petersburg

Source: President of the Republic of Belarus

18 July 2019

Ties between regions of Belarus and Russia took decades to evolve and were largely shaped by the common history and shared fates of the people. Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko made the relevant statement in his speech during the plenary session of the 6th Forum of Regions of Belarus and Russia on 18 July.
The Belarusian leader said: “Belarusians and Russians have gone through many trials and have endured them together with honor!”
“We have nothing to be ashamed of in our history. We should hold it sacred. Because it is our greatest legacy. When the West criticizes us – more in the past, slightly less these days and not because they have more conscience now – I tell them: you have yet to settle accounts with us for the final war that you brought to us, for the war we didn’t recover from for seven decades. This is why you should be careful when you speak about human rights, democracy, and deliver other unjustified criticisms at times,” Aleksandr Lukashenko stated.“Here, in the heroic land of Leningrad I would like to say once again: memory of that war is sacred for Belarusians,” the Belarusian leader stressed. “This year we’ve come up to another historic milestone – the 75th anniversary of lifting the blockade of Leningrad and Belarus’ liberation. Next year we will stand united as we celebrate the date every Soviet person holds sacred and dear – the 75th anniversary of the Great Victory.”Aleksandr Lukashenko believes these historical milestones are important for uniting Belarusians and Russians, for bolstering the ideological foundation of the Union State of Belarus and Russia.In his words, there are a number of sensitive issues affecting the interests of economic operators and citizens of Belarus and Russia. “They should be resolved in the near future,” Aleksandr Lukashenko emphasized.Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko made a speech during the plenary session of the 6th Forum of Regions of Belarus and Russia in St Petersburg. In his speech the head of state drew attention to Belarus-Russia interaction in various areas. He emphasized humanitarian cooperation and regional ties, remarked upon the history Belarusians and Russians share, and underlined the importance of pursuing an effective youth policy in addition to making a few remarks about integration.
The Belarusian head of state recalled that in December 2019 the two countries will mark the 20th anniversary of the Union State Treaty. “Over this time a lot has been done to achieve equal rights of citizens of our countries. Government groups are actively working on closer integration and priorities of common development. Vladimir Putin and I have agreements in principle on that,” the Belarusian leader said.
Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko suggested considering the possibility of making joint bids for large-scale sport events together with Russia. The head of state noted that the countries had already hosted large-scale international sport competitions successfully. They included the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia and the 2nd European Games 2019 in Belarus.“We need to think over the possible hosting of such competitions as part of the Belarus-Russia joint bid, with the financing secured from the Union State budget. This will give a boost to the tourism sector of our countries,” Aleksandr Lukashenko said.