Belarus President Lukashenko wants Bush to expose his income too
The Russian Foreign Affairs Ministry expressed its reaction on Thursday in connection with the decision of the House of Representatives of the US Congress to impose economic sanctions against Belarus. An official spokesman for the Russian Foreign Affairs Ministry, Alexander Yakovenko, stated that American officials had chosen a wrong way to go. “Moscow would like all countries to develop relations with Belarus,” the official stated.
Moscow officials released a very short comment on the matter. However, the decision of the American law-makers enraged the administration of Belarus. The Belarus government is expected to issue a special statement about it, the Izvestia newspaper wrote. It is easy to guess, what the document is going to say: the Belarussian Foreign Ministry, the Security Council and the president have already expressed their harsh opinions on the question. The speech from President Alexander Lukashenko was especially emphatic. The president said that the “Act About Democracy in Belarus” was a “fact of stupid pressure.”
Alexander Lukashenko's strategy is as follows: offence is the best defense. Lukashenko particularly stated: “The US administration is concerned about the democracy in Belarus, about our elections and referendums. However, they forget about their own problems. They even demand we should expose the data regarding the president's income,” said he. Lukashenko was very perturbed with that requirement from American officials. “Our parliament will gather and demand Bush should expose his income too. And then we will see, if he does so,” Lukashenko stated. According to the Belarussian president, his income is a lot lower than Bush's and all presidents' income on the whole. That is why, Alexander Lukashenko thinks that he has nothing to hide – he has already ordered to calculate everything that the state paid him and send the information to the States.
Spokesmen for the Belarussian Foreign Affairs Ministry stated that the decision of the US Congress was an “attempt to interfere in internal affairs.” “Their prime goal is to exert political pressure on the threshold of the referendum and parliamentary elections. The chairman of the committee for national security, Boris Bikkinin assured that the Belarussian economy will not suffer from the sanctions at all: “The republic has not received any considerable help from the USA anyway,” the official said.
American congressmen, meanwhile, intend to involve other countries in the process too. The act about democracy in Belarus says that the US Congress and president are supposed to coordinate the implementation of the draft law with other states (European countries first and foremost), giving them an incentive to take similar measures against Belarus.
The Secretary of the Belarus Security Council, Gennady Neviglas said that the US law-makers hoped to fabricate certain arguments, which would give Russia a reason to join the USA and the EU in their offence against Belarus. Neviglas also pointed out Europe's reserved reaction regarding the order from the Belarus president to hold a referendum in the country. However, a regular session of the Venice Commission of the Council of Europe has the question of the Belarussian referendum on its agenda.