Lukashenko: Belarus in talks to sell weapons to Venezuela

Belarus President Alexandr Lukashenko Friday said that Minsk is negotiating with Caracas the sale of Belarus weapons to Venezuela, but he refused elaborating on likely contracts.

Commenting on press reports claiming that Belarus and Venezuela are initialing a USD 1 billion arms sale agreement, Lukashenko stated, "this issue is absolutely secret," Russian news agency Interfax said.

"Russia is selling weapons to Venezuela, and we will cooperate with that country too, to the extent of our possibilities," Lukashenko added in an interview with Russian media in Minsk, Efe quoted.

The Belarus ruler acknowledged that Minsk and Caracas "are engaged in negotiations about military and technical cooperation," but questioned the amount of the reported arms sale agreement.

Lukashenko hailed Venezuela's support to Belarus in "critical times." He reminded that when Belarus needed money, Hugo Chavez' government granted them loans immediately, as well as on oilfield to pump crude oil in Venezuela, amidst a recent energy conflict between Minsk and Moscow.