A huge controversy has been stirred over the last few days as some media claimed that Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko has changed his birth date.
Currently the official website of the Belarus leader states that his birthday is August 31, 1954.
So, last Tuesday all major Belarusian TV channels congratulated the president, while the foreign media were confused over the unexpected shift.
For the last 55 years Aleksandr Lukashenko marked his birthday on August 30, according to Komsomolskaya Pravda daily. This date is mentioned in all encyclopedias, as well as his website - just until midday on August 30.
The curious journalists called the president's office, and were told that Likashenko's birthday "always has been August 31, and there's always been this date on the website."
BelaPAN company, also dying to resolve the intrigue, talked to some unnamed source in the presidential staff, who clarified that Lukashenko's mother came to the maternity hospital on the evening of August 30, but gave birth later, after midnight.
"There were no timers in the countryside maternal clinics in the 1950s, so obviously the child was registered on the 30th, when his mother arrived," he was quoted as saying.
After the birth of the president's last son Nikolay, whose birthday is also on August 31, Aleksander Lukashenko's interest in his own birthday grew, so he asked his mother and found out he came into the world on the 31st, the source added.
European Radio for Belarus claimed that for the first time the new switched date was announced in Lukashenko's interview to the Russian newspaper Zavtra in 2009. Four months later his new birthday was registered during the population census in Belarus.
But Lukashenko's school museum in his hometown, Aleksandriya village, still remains unchanged - that's what ERB was assured of by the school's director.
Even Belarus astrologists got suspicious and think that Lukashenko may have wanted to change his karma - or maybe the karma of the country - by switching the birth date. They also mention some "Masonic trace" in this curious case, because "nowadays all major leaders belong to a Freemason lodge or use their services."
Oddly enough, recently there has been another curios swing in Lukashenko's biography - in 2007 he officially claimed that he has three sons, not two, and that his third youngest son, Nikolay, is extramarital - but it's him who the president is going to make the chosen successor.
"Since it's happened this way, if you have a child, the background doesn't matter," he said to the Russian newspaper Izvestia. "Even Putin told me - this is from God. So why would I hide something that God's given me?"