SPACE FOR MOVEMENT

According to the decision, accepted during the CIS summit in Bishkek, Alexander Lukashenko will take charge of the EurAsEC International Council
According to the decision, accepted during the CIS summit in Bishkek,
Alexander Lukashenko will take charge of the EurAsEC International Council.

All 12 presidents visited the informal summit of CIS in Moscow, which took place in February. Who could suppose, that between two participants of the organization, who were the so-called brotherly Soviet republics, real military actions would begin? The main objective of this meeting at the highest level could become the discussion of this situation, as the heads of the states gathered for the first time after a short war in the Caucasus. But Dmitry Medvedev managed to speak to all the presidents of the CIS states in Bishkek earlier.

Minsk has clearly defined its position on the most important issue for Moscow on acknowledgement of independence of Abkhazia and South Ossetia — it is for the new parliament to decide. The President of Kazakstan Nursultan Nazarbaev has recently announced, that Astana would not admit the independence of these republics, he also doesn’t admit proclamation of independence of Kosovo. Experts think that there are too many concealed and obvious territorial disputes in CIS in order to give univocal versions. If the presidents discussed the recent events in Caucasus, than behind closed doors. It is only known that they accepted a decision to terminate the activity of collective forces of the Commonwealth to support peace in Abkhazia. Thus, Russian troops lost their peacemaking status in this republic. Now the basis for their location there is bilateral agreements between Sukhumi and Moscow.

In sum, yesterday the heads of the states examined and accepted almost 20 decisions. In particular, they appointed Moldova the CIS chairman for 2009. The topic to be developed by Moldavians, is power economy — it was defined a prioroty direction of the Commonwealth for the next year. Besides, they approved the plan of events concerning celebration of the 65th anniversary of the Victory. They signed a convention on near-border collaboration. They timely created a working group in connection with the world financial crisis. In the near future the ministers of finances will gather in Moscow and, probably, will try to define their joint actions. But the main document, which was planned to be accepted, the Strategy of economic development, was sent to revision. There is much to be done in the Commonwealth in terms of unity. This is a very difficult task.

The Belarusian party attentively and even narrowly watches how the Commonwealth is going to solve questions in the sphere of power economy, and warns the CIS not to be limited by declarations. The official Minsk thinks that the states shall find point of contacts in such an important sphere, as security of energy supply of the region, as soon as possible. They insist on the point, that opening of new march routes of oil and gas supply shouldn’t make damage to existing pipe-lines. The interests of suppliers, transit states and consumers of energy resources shall be equally taken into account. Belarus for its part is ready to sign international agreements, providing safety of the country as a transitor.

Six states — Belarus, Kazakstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tadjikistan and Uzbekistan — seem not to doubt the fact, that it is necessary to integrate closer. The Belarusian delegation considered establishment of a single energy market a priority objective.

There is also such an opinion in Minsk: EurAsEC didn’t become the structure it was initially planned to become. The example can be creation of the Customs Union. Belarus was practically the one to ratify all corresponding agreements. Besides, this time the heads of the states were mainly engaged in analyzing decisions accepted earlier. There is space for criticism and, correspondingly, for improvements. It means, for thematic work of the Belarusian party, to which chair functions are being delivered. By decision of the summit, Alexander Lukashenko will take charge of the International Council of EurAsEC.

It is remarkable, that in Bishkek the President of Belarus also made an official visit to Kyrgyzstan. It can be called a return visit. In 2006 Kurmanbek Bakiev visited Belarus. The main result became signing of the Treaty for friendship and cooperation. If negotiations, which took place two years ago, were to some extent political, this time economical issues were discussed. The central point of the program became opening in Bishkek of the joint venture for manufacturing Belarusian tractors. Though, of course, the other cooperation spheres were also discussed. By results of negotiations the presidents accepted the joint declaration, where they confirmed the intention to continue an intensive and constructive political dialogue, to develop interstate relations based on mutual respect.

Andrey Kharitonov
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