By Igor Slavinsky
The President of Belarus is continuing his practice of communicating with foreign journalists. In recent years, he has held dozens of sincere talks but this was the first interview with the American mass media after the presidential elections and after the White House again imposed sanctions on official Minsk. The Presidential Press Service tells us that the talks lasted for three hours, covering bilateral relations and their prospects in the light of recent events, alongside Belarus’ co-operation with other countries. Additionally, The Washington Post was interested in our domestic political and economic situation.
In honesty, the American printed media seldom refers to remote Belarus. Moreover, these rare articles primarily cover only negative aspects. Mr. Lukashenko gave his opinion on events from the evening of December 19th and what followed, allowing American readers to form an objective view of reality. The interview published in The Washington Post is an exclusive.
For several decades, (probably since its journalists revealed Watergate), the newspaper has enjoyed huge influence on public opinion in the USA. Its main rival is The New York Times, which supports the Democrats, while The Washington Post expresses sympathy with the Republicans. In this respect, the edition is like the ‘opposition’ — although no strict distinction is observed in the United States. The Washington Post is read by the White House and the Department of State.