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Alexander Lukashenko comments on espionage scandal with Ukrainian journalist involved

Another issue that was discussed during Alexander Lukashenko’s working visit to the Gomel region was the relaxations with neighboring Ukraine.

What is the reason for such a large scale scandal?

Alexander Lukashenko, President of the Republic of Belarus:
Ukraine was concerned that Russian troops will stay somewhere in the Gomel region, that these troops are aiming at Kiev from the north. And the President of Ukraine was telling me about this. I said, “Never!”. I said it in front of the public before that we will come to Kiev on a tractor, not on a tank. You remember this phrase and what I was saying.

I met with President Poroshenko in the UAE, and we discussed the problem then. I have known him for a long time; he has many friends and acquaintances in the Belarusian government. We have known each other for a long time. I told him, “Petro, what haven’t we dome from what we promised to do?” He said that Ukraine has no claims against Belarus. It was said no so long ago, on the eve of the 100th anniversary of the October Revolution. He said that there are no claims.

SEE: Belarus, Ukraine presidents meet in UAE

The second issue (I’ll be honest here) concerned espionage. He asked me this question. I gave him facts and said it honestly that I knew it from the very beginning about the neutralization of a whole spying chain-this is the practice. The KGB chairman reported to me straight away and asked me for the sanctions. “There can be no sanctions to spies; the attitude to them is within the law”. We were also discussing the issue how it will influence the relation with Ukraine.

President Poroshenko and I have agreed.

SEE: Ukrainian journalist accused of spying against Belarus

        Ukraine expells Belarusian diplomat

President Poroshenko said, “we do not need this scandal”. I said to him, “I do not need this scandal as well. I want me raising the problem and showing that we have detained Ukrainian spies who were working under the cover of diplomats and journalists”. Agreed? Agreed. We quietly dismissed this embassy worker. Nevertheless, if you are going to put a focus on this problem, then we will have to reveal the cards.

And what happened? They made a fuss out of it there. “Someone was detained! Someone was detained illegally”! I understand that something could have gone wrong there; some kind of misunderstanding may be President Poroshenko did not pass our agreement on to them? But he passed it on to the mass media.

What else did I have to do? I gave orders, canceled my decision. Then I said to publish some facts on the issue I the mass media, so that people understand that we are not putting the relations with Ukraine under pressure. We showed the fact and the person from Ukraine admitted where he worked, how he worked and under whose cover he was working. There is loads of additional information.

I don’t know why the Ukrainian special services and the Ukrainian President himself needed this scandal.

Alexander Lukashenko comments on espionage scandal with Ukrainian journalist involved