Belarus will find alternative to Russian gas


Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko is optimistic about finding alternative gas supplies.

"We have found an alternative to oil supplies and will find a gas alternative too. We have a right to look for an alternative and we will find it," Lukashenko said in his speech at the 4th All-Belarusian People's Congress on Monday.

He acknowledged that he had always found it hard "to cooperate with new Russia".

"It's not a matter of personal relationships. I am ready to tolerate everything. But I can't agree when gas prices are raised twofold on New Year's Eve," he said.

"We will never tolerate being humiliated or being lorded over. Otherwise, you should look for a new president. But as long as I remain president, I will not accept this," Lukashenko said.

He reminded the deputies that Belarus had been forced to consider alternative oil supplies.

"If we turn to Venezuela, if we have to pump oil through Ukraine, that's because we have no other way out," Lukashenko said.

He accused Russia of trying to export gas by-passing Belarus, while it's possible to extend the Yamal-Europe gas pipeline.

Moscow alleges that Belarus is not a reliable partner, but while the Russian leadership has a right to think so, Belarus too has a right to search for solutions that will suit it more, the Belarusian president said.


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