How Russians perceive Belarus

How Russians perceive Belarus

Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko and Russian President Vladimir Putin met in Moscow last week. A week before that, Alexander Lukashenko announced negotiations with Vladimir Putin at a conference for Russian journalists. He said: “We’ll discuss important issues together.” It happened so and the presidents exchanged their views on topical issues.

Alexander Lukashenko, President of the Republic of Belarus:
First of all, Vladimir Vladimirovich, I want to thank you for inviting me. In times of different crises, we cannot stay apart. There are problems that we should solve very rapidly. I guess we’ll discuss problems that occur from time to time and will make an appropriate decision. I thank you once again for this opportunity to be present here, in the Kremlin, today and discuss topical issues.

Vladimir Putin, President of the Russian Federation:
Last year, there was a slight decline and in the first half of this year there is also a slight decline – minus 8%. Nevertheless, it is all variable. The main thing is that we have not just big projects. It’s important that reproduction and capacity mechanism of our trade and economic relations is created. Its diversification is the most important. We are able to not only restore it, but also move further thanks to existing institutions and those created with your help. Mutual investments of Russian investors in Belarusian economy and vice versa continue. The question of cooperation enlargement, including mechanical engineering, also continues. All these are preconditions to move further.

Nowadays, mutually advantageous exchange of goods, defensive alliance and mutual support on the international arena and, of course, barrier-free communication of people are the basis of Belarus-Russia relations.

Mikhail Ganyushkin was offered a job in one of the leading Belarusian IT companies. He came to Minsk from Moscow with a great pleasure.

Mikhail Ganyushkin, IT company employee:
We are perceived here as nonresidents. But it’s not a problem.

Larisa came to Vitebsk region from St. Petersburg six years ago. Now, she lives there and receives guests from different parts of the world in her country estate.

Larisa Kozyritskaya, country estate owner:
We wanted to change the rapid life rhythm of Moscow and chose this calm place with fresh air and a large lake.

Javid Gamzatov is from Dagestan, Russian Federation. He moved to Minsk at the age of 17.

Javid Gamzatov, winner of Olympic bronze in Brazil 2016 (Greco-Roman wrestling):
I don’t feel a stranger here. I’ve been living in Belarus for ten years and already got used to this life.

Vladimir Rybalko is a retired Capitan of the first rank. He’s changed his profession and works as a teacher.

Vladimir Rybalko, teacher of professional lyceum No7 in Mogilev:
I didn’t need to adapt. Our people are similar and have common traditions.

Lyudmila Khitrova came to Belarus seven years ago from Nizhny Novgorod and now she is a leading scene master.

Lyudmila Khitrova, National Academic Bolshoi Opera and Ballet Theatre ballet artist:
It is very calm and clean here, which is a great positive side. In my city, you can’t be sure that your night walk will be safe, while here in Belarus I feel protected.

Ludmila’s husband, according to her, has many features typical of Belarusian people.

Lyudmila Khitrova:
Men are always ready to help here. People are reliable. This is true for all Belarusians. I don’t feel a stranger in Belarus and got used to living here.