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Belarus' foreign policy


February 2015 as a breakthrough for Belarusian diplomacy President of Belarus is planning a visit to Kazakhstan in mid-March. But in recent weeks, Alexander Lukashenko has received a string of visitors not from Asia but from Europe and America - multivectorness again bubbles in political veins. It is always known who comes to Minsk but why - is not always advertised in such detail. There are secrets in economy and in politics. 


Belarus' Foreign Minister: We do not aim to get dividends for our stance on Ukraine Latvian Foreign Minister Edgars Rinkevics arrived in Minsk and met with his Belarusian counterpart Vladimir Makei. The Latvian Foreign Minister emphasized the role of Belarus in resolving the conflict in Ukraine. As stressed by Mr Rinkevics, the position of the Belarus government in this area has a positive effect on the normalization of relations with the European Union.


Belarus' foreign minister: Cautious optimism in relation to the developments in eastern Ukraine
Belarus' foreign minister: Cautious optimism in relation to the developments in eastern Ukraine Foreign Minister of Belarus Vladimir Makei met with the head of the Iranian Foreign Ministry Mohammad Javad Zarif on 17 February.  The parties discussed the trade and economic relations between the two countries. After that, Vladimir Makei touched upon the Ukrainian theme in the context of the talks held in the Normandy format in Minsk. The Foreign Minister of Belarus noted that he assesses the prospects of the settlement of the conflict in the south-east of Ukraine with cautious optimism. He stressed the importance of meeting the conditions set out in the Minsk II agreement.
Alexander Lukashenko hails Belarus-Iran relations
Alexander Lukashenko hails Belarus-Iran political relations Belarus will always faithfully adhere to agreements with Iran and do everything to ensure that the partners feel secure.  The Head of State said this on February 17 at a meeting with Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif. Belarus and Iran established diplomatic relations over 20 years. Alexander Lukashenko visited this Islamic republic twice. There were also return visits of Iranian President to Belarus. The parties intend to raise to a higher level their economic relations.


Alexander Lukashenko and Vladimir Putin
Alexander Lukashenko, Vladimir Putin express interest in early cessation of armed conflict in eastern Ukraine Alexander Lukashenko and Vladimir Putin have expressed interest in the early cessation of the armed conflict in eastern Ukraine. The President of Belarus had a telephone conversation with the Russian leader.  The heads of state discussed the preparation of the forthcoming summit of the Normandy Quartet. They talked over the main points of the document, which is now being worked out at the level of the delegations and will be submitted for consideration to the leaders of the Normandy Quartet.
Independence Palace in Minsk
Belarus' Foreign Ministry confirms contact group meeting on February 11 continues On February 11, Minsk is again in the center of world politics. The Belarusian capital will host a meeting of the Heads of State of the so-called "Normandy Quartet" to resolve the situation in Ukraine.  The Independence Palace is ready for the arrival of Vladimir Putin, Petro Poroshenko, Francois Hollande and Angela Merkel. The CTV crew are also there at the moment. Our correspondent Alexey Martinenok is going to report live from the site. Alexei, what can you tell us?


German Foreign Minister: We hope for success in the negotiations in Minsk
German Foreign Minister: We hope for success in the negotiations in Minsk On the eve of the Minsk meeting of the Normandy Quartet European diplomats in Berlin sat at the negotiating table. The main objective of the representatives of the foreign ministries of Russia, Ukraine, Germany and France is to prepare a fertile ground for the Minsk talks. Many European experts, as well as the participants of the forthcoming meeting consider that during the Normandy Quartet summit in Minsk, an important step will be made to solve the Ukrainian conflict.


Dmitry Mironchik, spokesman for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Belarus
Belarusian Foreign Ministry recommends Belarusians to refrain from traveling to major cities in Egypt Belarusian Foreign Ministry recommends Belarusians not to leave the resort areas and not to travel to major cities of Egypt. Such measures are related to the increasing attacks in that country. Dmitry Mironchik, Belarus Foreign Ministry spokesman:In connection with the terrorist attacks in Egypt, the Belarusian Foreign Ministry recommends Belarusian citizens who are on holiday in Egypt or intending to visit the country, not to leave the resort areas and not to travel to big cities and districts of North Sinai.   


Nicolás Maduro and Alexander Lukashenko
Belarus wants to reinvigorate bilateral contacts with Venezuela Venezuelan Foreign Minister Delcy Rodriguez on February 2 held a meeting with the Ambassador of Belarus Oleg Paferov. The sides discussed bilateral cooperation, enhanced action on joint projects and touched upon the preparation and organization of the next session of the Belarusian-Venezuelan joint high-level commission, reports the press service of the Belarusian Foreign Ministry.


Belarus Foreign Minister Vladimir Makei
Belarus Foreign Ministry: Contact group meeting is a unique chance to stop the bloodshed in Ukraine The meeting of the tripartite contact group on Ukraine is underway in Minsk. Today, on January 31, representative of Ukraine Leonid Kuchma, OSCE Special Representative Heidi Tagliavini, Russia's Ambassador to Ukraine Mikhail Zurabov, as well as the representatives of the self-proclaimed Donetsk and Luhansk People's Republics arrived in the Belarusian capital. Leonid Kuchma has already met Foreign Minister of Belarus Vladimir Makei. The sides discussed the situation in the conflict zone and the way out of the crisis on the basis of the Minsk agreements signed in September 2014.


Trilateral contact group to meet on 30 January in Minsk The tripartite contact group to resolve the situation in the Donbass featuring official representatives of Ukraine, Russia and the OSCE will be held in Minsk on January 30.


Belarus' Foreign Minsitry building
Belarus urges to stop fire in Ukraine: Foreign Ministry "Belarus with deep pain perceived news about the tragic events in Ukraine related to the deaths of civilians in Mariupol on January 24," said in a statement the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Belarus. The statement was posted on January 26 at the official website of the department. The Belarusian side expresses its deepest condolences to the families and friends of the victims.


Dmitry Mironchik, spokesman for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Belarus
Belarus ready to do everything possible to resolve conflict in Ukraine On January 22, the Belarusian Foreign Ministry once again called on the warring parties in Ukraine to resolve the conflict. The Foreign Ministry of Belarus made it clear that if necessary it will organize meetings of the contact group in the formats agreed upon by the parties to the negotiation process. 


Belarus to cancel visas with Brazil, Ecuador Belarus has completed the domestic ratification procedures in line with agreements with Brazil and Ecuador on the abolition of visas. The texts of these agreements were published at the national legal website on January 6. The agreement between the governments of Belarus and Brazil on visa abolition for short trips was ratified by the virtue of the relevant Belarus' law as of December 29, 2014.
Alexander Lukashenko increasingly popular with Internet users Interest in activities and the political figure of the Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko has been recently growing steadily. In December, the number of mentions of the Belarusian President in international news feeds of online resources exceeded 11,000. It is twice more than the November figure. Also, on the eve of New Year, Alexander Lukashenko made it into the top 10 most popular persons of the month in the Russian media. Special attention was drawn to the New Year's address of the President.


Belarus wants rapprochement with EU based on mutual respect Belarus is interested in normalizing relations with the European partners based on mutually respectful principles. Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko met with former Italy premier Romano Prodi December 17.  The influential politician is visiting Belarus as a private person. However, his views on the situation in the world are of course respectable.


Prodi for tighter Belarus-EU cooperation Sanctions and their impact on the global economy, falling oil prices, the situation in Ukraine, the simplification of the visa regime between the EU and Belarus - all these issues were discussed at the December 16 meeting with former prime minister of Italy and former European Commission President Romano Prodi. The prominent politician arrived in Belarus for the first time. Now the professor of economics gives lectures in various universities around the world.
Alexander Lukashenko signs Belarus' state defense directive Belarus should do everything to ensure military and socio-political security, said Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko at a meeting of the country's Security Council, which considered a state defense plan, which is designed for five years.  The document outlines almost all potential threats and responses to them. The situation around Belarus is constantly changing. Conflicts break out in the world rapidly and unpredictably. 


Belarus confirms interest in tighter cooperation with African states 10 new ambassadors presented their credentials to Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko December 12. The ceremony symbolizes the official start of diplomats' duties in Belarus. This time, taking part in the ceremony were ambassadors of Afghanistan, Bulgaria, Egypt, the Republic of the Congo, Mozambique, Pakistan, Portugal, Syria, Ecuador and Estonia.   Credentials are formal requests of heads of other states asking the Belarusian President to accord full credence to diplomats' official statements. 
Belarus needs to diversify export amid neighbors' economic problems, Alexander Lukashenko says On December 12, the Belarusian President met with the country's Foreign Minister Vladimir Makei to discuss Belarus' multi-vector foreign policy. The head of state touched on issues related to foreign policy and economy. He underlined the importance of increasing export. This is Mr Lukashenko's second such statement in as many days. Russia, Belarus' main trading partner, is experiencing one of its worst economic crises in recent years.
Sanctions against Belarus affect living standards - President Ten new ambassadors presented their credentials to Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko. Taking part in the ceremony were ambassadors of Afghanistan, Bulgaria, Egypt, Congo, Mozambique, Pakistan, Portugal, Syria, Ecuador and Estonia. Six ambassadors have a concurrent accreditation in Moscow and Kiev.  Such a rich variety of countries underlines the multi-vector foreign policy of Belarus.


Ukraine crisis talks due in Minsk December 9 The meeting of the contact group to resolve the crisis in the Donbass region will be held in Minsk on December 9, said Ukraine President Petro Poroshenko at a briefing in Chuguev, the Kharkov region. According to him, as of December 6, the sides reached a preliminary agreement the parties to the conflict will meet in Minsk on December 9. At the same time, the Ukraine President noted that he is cautiously optimistic about the possibility of a ceasefire from December 9, after the meeting in Minsk.