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Print out date: 20.04.2018 19:28
15.03.2017 15:09 Politics, Belarus — EU

Foreign Minister Makey admits to fears over "fragile" process of normalizing relations with EU

By Maryna Nosava, BelaPAN
Minsk, 15 March. One always fears that the "fragile process of the normalization of relations between Belarus and the EU may stall or halt," Foreign Minister Uladzimir Makey said Wednesday in Minsk, speaking to reporters after a meeting with Belgian Deputy Prime Minister/Foreign Minister Didier Reynders.
Mr. Makey was replying to a BelaPAN corresponendent`s question as to whether or not he was concerned that the recent multiple arrests over peaceful protests might affect Minsk`s dialogue with the European Union.
"We understand perfectly well that there are certain values in the European Union that the organization`s member states adhere to," he said. "And we understand perfectly well that these values are of great importance to the EU. My counterpart and I discussed the matter in general and in detail."
Mr. Makey stressed that it had taken some countries "not even dozens but hundreds of years" to become true democracies. "The establishment of true democracy in the truly European sense of the word requires much time, requires a change in people`s mentality and mindset," he said, adding that such changes would also have to involve civil society.
Mr. Makey claimed that many people both in Belarus and abroad wanted to use street protests against a so-called parasite tax "for their personal ends."
"I don`t want to say that the arrests are absolutely correct. I just want to warn against using these small demonstrations for some political purposes," he said.
Mr. Makey expressed certainty that Belarus would "get through this stage." "Unfortunately, difficulties of the kind may emerge from time to time on the way toward the normalization of our relations with the EU," he said. "But it is important to provide timely information about all circumstances and discuss ways out of similar situations both today and in the future."




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