Belorussian president sends letter of support to ousted Moscow mayor

President Alexander Lukashenko of Belarus sent a letter of support Friday to ousted Moscow Mayor Yuri Luzhkov, Interfax news agency reported.

"I signed a sincere friendly letter to him. Life is not over at this point," Lukashenko told a press conference in Minsk, adding that he "can understand" Luzhkov's hard feelings.

Luzhkov's resignation will not affect their personal relations, the Belorussian president was quoted by official Belta news agency as saying.

"Yuri Mikhailovich is my friend and he remains my friend. There is no ground for our relations to get worse," Lukashenko said. He said it was impossible to strike out what Luzhkov had done for Belarus.

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev on Tuesday dismissed Luzhkov, who has drawn fierce criticism over alleged corruption links and indifference during the unusual weather conditions this summer.

A presidential decree published on the Kremlin website said the dismissal of Luzhkov was "in connection with the loss of the Russian president's confidence."


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