Belarus prime minister about new response to sanctions: We will play it by ear

Belarus prime minister about new response to sanctions: We will play it by ear
Roman Golovchenko

MINSK, 4 May (BelTA) – The Belarusian government will play it by ear as far as new possible measures in response to sanctions are concerned. Prime Minister of Belarus Roman Golovchenko made the statement after delivering a report to Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko on 4 May, BelTA has learned.

Roman Golovchenko stressed that in line with international law sanctions can be authorized in response to extremely serious and proven crimes, which are committed in a specific country. Such a situation cannot apply to Belarus.

The official went on saying: “Unfortunately, due to the overall devaluation of the international legal system sanctions are used as a tool to influence or pressure disagreeable countries in order to, as a rule, worsen the economic situation in them. In other words, declared goals of the sanctions deviate from their implementation.” In his words, Belarus experienced various forms of sanction-based pressure over the course of several years. “You can see the results: we’ve become stronger, we’ve learned how to live in these conditions. We don’t accept it and cannot make peace with attempts to pressure a sovereign and independent state. We moderately respond to these attacks, not only verbally, not only with statements, but with specific economic measures. We don’t want to use sanctions indiscriminately like our opponents, this is why we respond both symmetrically and asymmetrically,” he said.

The prime minister reminded that the head of state had passed a presidential decree on special protective measures. The government has already partially realized the rights the decree provides. “We will play it by ear later on,” Roman Golovchenko promised.

Asked to clarify what foreign companies the response sanctions may affect in the future, Roman Golovchenko said: “If it comes to that, we will surely say it. But let me stress it once again that we don’t want to act indiscriminately the way they do against us.” The official expects common sense to ultimately prevail in political and business circles in the West and they will stop sanction-based pressure. Moreover, such countries as Lithuania, Latvia, Poland, and Ukraine have serious business interests in Belarus, Roman Golovchenko pointed out.

“Belarus is a peace-loving country, including in foreign policy. But if we are attacked, we will be forced to respond,” he continued. “But we expect that common sense will prevail and we will not reach a point when we have to respond symmetrically. But if the situation demands it, we are ready for it.”


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