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Alexander Lukashenko's interview for Bloomberg and experts' comments

On relations with Russia, Belarus' economy and the situation in Ukraine. On April 2, the agency Bloomberg aired an exclusive interview with President Alexander Lukashenko. The head of state spoke about a half hour with a leading London-based journalist of the media holding Ryan Chilcote.

The British journalist has already talked with the President. They met for an interview 14 years ago. Then Ryan Chilcote worked for the CNN. Upon arrival, the reporter immediately tweeted about how Belarus has changed.

Alexander Lukashenko called for the peaceful resolution of the Ukraine conflict. Now the situation remains volatile in the Donbas.

Alexander Lukashenko, Belarus President:
I believe that it is not too late. And for the sake of Ukraine's unity and coherence, it is necessary to perform the Minsk agreements, which were signed by the Ukrainian leadership too.

Ryan Phillip Chilcot, correspondent of Bloomberg TV (UK):
(in Russian) Still, for now, the Minsk agreements are being followed but there is no peace. So what is missing?

Alexander Lukashenko, Belarus President:
You know, no matter how difficult the situation is, it is easier to advise. It is easier for me because I'm not involved. But I think I would act this way if I were the head of Ukraine. You know, human life is much more valuable and more expensive than any conflict, territorial claims and other things. I would contact any side for the sake of people's lives, so that people don't die.  And we can't prevent specific contacts with the current leaders of the Donetsk and Luhansk people's republics.
Everyone understands that some changes are necessary in Ukraine. These changes are impossible without changes in the Constitution are not possible.

This interview is an exclusive product of the media holding Bloomberg. It combines multiple information platforms - radio, television, magazines, websites, and mobile applications. The potential audience is in 200 countries. The central office is located in New York.

Incidentally, in this interview, the President of Belarus said that it is alarming that the United States had not joint the process to resolve the Ukrainian crisis. Experts say that this idea is quite logical. It is still too early to talk about complete peace in Ukraine but all the important players in the world should have a chance to rectify the situation.

Sergei Kizima, Doctor of political sciences, Head of the Department of International Relations of the Academy of Public Administration under the aegis of the Belarus President:
Many aspects of the Ukrainian tragedy cannot be understood if one does not understand that, in principle, this is the same struggle of Russia and the United States for influence. And the fact that America has a very popular idea to send weapons to Ukraine, you know that it is hardly possible to put out the fire of war, throwing there missiles, tanks and artillery.

After all the events in Ukraine, the situation in the region is different. But it did not affect the relations between Belarus and Russia, said Alexander Lukashenko. In the conversation, the President and the journalist touched on the theme of Belarus-Russia union relations.

Alexander Lukashenko, Belarus President:
There are a lot of people in Russia among politicians who think imperially and only see Belarus as a kind of its northwestern territory. We give a concrete answer: we will not be the northwestern territory but we will never conflict with Russia either. The Russian leadership has never put the question directly about Belarus becoming part of Russia. There were some hints in the past but I responded that we would remain a sovereign and independent state. And we will be sovereign.

However, there are a lot of challenges in the new integration project - Eurasian Economic Union (EEU). The leaders of Belarus, Russia and Kazakhstan have recently discussed all the problems in Astana. It was there where some experts mentioned on the subject of the single currency. The money issue is exaggerated. It is a possible prospect, but it is very far away.

Yuri Shevtsov, political analyst:
The theme of the single currency resurfaced many times in the framework of the Union State of Russia and Belarus. The degree of integration in the Union State is much higher than in the EEU, so we can seriously talk about it only when the degree of integration in the EEU exceeds that of the Belarus-Russia Union State, which is a very distant perspective.

The conversation between Alexander Lukashenko and the British journalist continued 1.5 hours. They talked about what is happening today in Belarus. The economic situation is not easy but its state is not critical. Belarus tries to respond adequately to the situation in the world.

In the studio, the reporter shared his impressions - this is a special feature in presenting of the material. All the news has been marked exclusive. Though the holding company specializes on financial information, today it is clear how the economy in the region is affected by the political situation.

Alexander Lukashenko's interview for Bloomberg and experts' comments