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“During the recent years, Russia’s opponents have turned to be Lukashenko’s best friends”

During their recent meeting, Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan discussed not only to the economic cooperation, but also to the Turkey-Russia relations, Andrey Suzdaltsev, Deputy Dean, Faculty of World Economy and International Affairs, HSE, told EADaily on April 14.

He said the Turkish business is an integral part of the economy of Belarus. “Hotels, not-large enterprises of Belarus were privatized in favor of the Turkish capital. Belarus has been using the development of the Russian-Turkish relations with benefit during the last years. Naturally, Lukashenko is now concerned over the financial and economic state of his country and is trying to launch any contacts,” Suzdaltsev said.

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In addition, he said, Erdoğan and Lukashenko discussed Putin’s stand on the crisis of the Ankara-Moscow relations. “Lukashenko traditionally tries to come out as a broker. He even tries to create an impression as if he has been authorized by someone to hold such talks. Nothing of the kind happened before. It is quite probable that Lukashenko could present everything as if he was authorized by Moscow, which is rather doubtful,” he said.

Suzdaltsev made a point of the fact that Erdoğan is not the first opponent of Russia with whom Alexander Lukashenko supports friendly relations. “There have been a very bad tendency in the relations of our countries during the recent years. Actually, our staunch opponents suddenly turn to be Alexander Lukashenko’s best friends. I am speaking not only about Erdoğan, but also Saakashvili and Poroshenko,” Suzdaltsev said. He sees certain attempts of blackmail and pressure on Moscow in all this.

As EADaily reported earlier, Alexander Lukashenko travelled to Istanbul to attend the conference of the Organization of Islamic Conference (OIC). On April 13, he met with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan saying, “It is time to boost the cooperation.”

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