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Lukashenko decides not to follow Armenia’s way

The president of Belarus will never put "judges and the people before the choice of changing the state’s constitutional foundations to fit some personality." Alexander Lukashenko stated this on April 24 during his annual message to the Belarusian people and the National Assembly, EADaily’s correspondent reports.

"Once and for all I want to say - I have never acted dishonestly against our people and I will never go for it. I have promised it and I will never break my vow. Or it will be like in Armenia. If there is a referendum, it will be announced in advance. I personally did not even think about the referendum. We are not up for a referendum right now. We need to stand out in this chaotic dangerous situation in the world. It is necessary to stop this bustling," the Belarusian leader said, referring to a possible referendum on changing the country's basic law.

Alexander Lukashenko also expressed hope that "some agitated media that sit over the border and receive money from unclear sources" will hear him and will not unreasonably raise the referendum issue. "We are not up for a referendum right now. We need to stand out in this dangerous chaotic situation in the world. We do not want to raise a riot in the country. You see who urges changes in the constitution. The main thing is to start the process, get involved in a fight. They will not be responsible for the consequences of the referendum and changes in the constitution," the Belarusian leader said.

At the same time, according to Lukashenko, amendments to the constitution are possible, as in recent years there have been serious changes in the country. At the same time, the Belarusian leader believes that some of the presidential powers today can be transferred to other power branches. According to the Belarusian leader, a possible referendum on constitution amending will be of a technical nature, so that the basic law will meet the changing demands of the times. Therefore, Lukashenko has already instructed the Constitutional Court judges, along with scientists, lawyers and parliamentarians to prepare constitutional amendments. "So that when the time comes we can offer approaches for the future of Belarus," Lukashenko said. The main thing, according to the president, is that the amended constitution does not become a foundation "for the Maidan and its supporters."

As EADaily reported, on March 15 at a meeting with Belarus Constitutional Court judges, Alexander Lukashenko once again stated that over time, the country will come to discuss the basic law amending issue. "The constitution should be a step or two ahead of the changes in our society. Hence the problem that, as I have already said, if it has not risen yet, then it will arise - adjusting, changing the norms of the constitution," the president said then. On April 10, speaking at a meeting with the leaders and collectives of the largest state-owned media, Lukashenko also commented on the prospects for amending the constitution, noting that, from his point of view, part of the functions should pass from the president to other power branches. However, as Lukashenko noted, "this moment has not yet come."

Let us recall that the results of the constitutional reform in the post-Soviet space were recently demonstrated by Armenia, where in 2015 a referendum was held on the issue of changing the form of governance and transition to a parliamentary republic, which met an approving reaction from the US.

At the same time, experts interviewed by EADaily warned that in realities of the CIS countries, this is fraught with serious risks. Serzh Sargsyan intended to extend his tenure in office, assuming the post of prime minister. Political expert Sergey Minasyan told EADaily that the ex-president of Armenia sought to obtain a status similar to that of Bidzina Ivanishvili in neighboring Georgia, moving away from direct control over what is happening in the country, but at the same time retaining the right to make decisions on strategic issues. However, as a result of mass protest actions on April 23, Sargsyan was forced to resign.

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