Laurynas Jonavičius, a lecturer at Vilnius Institute of International Relations and Political Science, Doctor of Political Science took part in the TV program Simple Questions with Egor Khrustalev.
Belarus is positive about the recent development of its relations with the EU; I suppose they took place after those important meetings in Mink concerning the situation in Ukraine. What do you think? Are there positive strides of the EU, Europe, and Lithuania towards Belarus?
Laurynas Jonavičius, lecturer at Vilnius Institute of International Relations and Political Science, Doctor of Political Science:
There are two players which agree on the conditions and the rules of cooperation.
Nevertheless, do you see changes in the dialogue, whether the dialogue was held on a different note?
Belarus is a sovereign state. And we cooperate with it. By “we” I mean the European Union. We cooperate with Belarus as far as it is possible.
Both sides have economic interests;
there are security interests as well. There are also issues as migration flows, which are increasing. It is common interest to work with. Work is being carried out concerning all these issues. There are programs which are proposed by the EU to Belarus. There is the same “Eastern Partnership” initiative. However, it all depends on how much Belarus wants to accept the conditions of increasing cooperation from the EU. I suppose that it is a long process. However, it does not only depend on Belarus or the EU, but it also depends on the events around us, in Russia and in other parts of the world. Belarus needs the EU as a trade and export market. It would be difficult for Belarus without the EU. The European Union won’t disappear and we must cooperate. It depends on many factors whether this cooperation will be successful or not.