Multi-vector policy and openness to new relations
By Igor Slavinsky
The ambassadors of important partners for Belarus on the international arena have presented their credentials to President Lukashenko, opening a new page of relations with these states. “Belarus is open to mutually beneficial partnership,” the President told the foreign diplomats.
Several months ago, Maira Mora was appointed as the first head of the EU Delegation to Belarus and is the only diplomat to have twice presented her credentials to Mr. Lukashenko. From 2004-2010, Ms. Mora headed the Latvian Embassy. She returned to Minsk recently, representing all 27 EU states. The President noted that she is ‘extremely knowledgeable’ regarding the situation in Belarus. “I hope that her rich experience of working for neighbouring Latvia’s diplomatic service — a country far from alien to us — will allow her to actively promote Belarusian-European relations while ensuring principles of equal rights and mutual respect,” he added.
Mr. Lukashenko is convinced that any problems observed in Belarusian-Ukrainian relations can be resolved. On accepting credentials from Viktor Tikhonov, he admitted that he expects ‘consistent and systematic work to build a true partnership’ from the new Ukrainian ambassador.
Azerbaijan is another important partner of the Republic within the post-Soviet space. On accepting credentials from its new ambassador, Isfandiyar Vahabzade, the President asked him to send ‘words of the greatest gratitude, as — however strange it might seem — Azerbaijan was the first to back Belarus in hard times’.
Among other states sending their ambassadors to Minsk were Brazil, Greece, Zambia, India, Malaysia, Namibia, Serbia, Thailand and Turkey. Minsk is keen to develop active co-operation with all of them; as Mr. Lukashenko stressed, all nations are equally important to Belarus, whose foreign policy is multi-vectored.