Medvedev hopes tensions in Russia-Belarus relations will end

MOSCOW, October 3 (Itar-Tass) - Russian President Dmitry Medvedev in his videoblog on Sunday expressed confidence that a senseless period of tensions in Russian-Belarussian relations will certainly end.

"I would like to say frankly - Russia is ready to develop allied relations with Belarus," he said. "Moreover, irrespective of who will rule Russia and Belarus, our nations will always remain fraternal. We would like to see our citizens living not in fear, but in the atmosphere of freedom, democracy and justice, we are ready to go along this path hand in hand with our Belarussian friends."

"Russia will always consider Belarus its closest neighbour", as they are tied up by age-old history, joint culture, common joys and sorrows, Medvedev said. "We will always remember that our people - and all the time I want to say our single nation - suffered great losses during WWII and together lived through disastrous years of collectivization, famine and repressions."

The Russian leader reiterated that Russia and Belarus are partners in the Union State, in the EurAsEC, the Collective Security Treaty Organization and the CIS.

"We plan to the full extent expand our cooperation with Belarus within the framework of these organizations and of course, we will insistently introduce modern forms of economic interaction, notably in strict compliance with the global practice of relations between close allies such as our countries," he said.

Medvedev reiterated that Russia has always helped Belarus. "Since the collapse of the Soviet Union, this is almost 20 years, the volume of our support - whatever they say - was huge. This year alone our support to Belarus through preferential oil supplies comprised almost 2 billion U.S. dollars; equitable subsidies are provided through gas supplies," he said.

"We do all this, because we are confident that our nations are inseparably tied up," Medvedev said.


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