The Lithuanian president's advisor has blamed the European Union for the lack of a dialogue with Alyaksandr Lukashenka's government.
Speaking to a group of EU reporters in Vilnius, Darius Semaska said that during Lithuanian President Dalia Grybauskaite's visit to Minsk in 2010, Mr. Lukashenka was told that if he held the presidential election in line with EU standards, the 27-nation bloc would take steps toward closer ties with Minsk.
Unfortunately, this did not work, maybe because the EU was too "impatient," Lithuania's news site delfi.lt quoted Mr. Semaska as saying.
In addition, he said, the EU pinned too much hope on Belarusian opposition forces and a different tactics would have proved more efficient. "If there had been fewer ambitions, maybe we could have agreed with Lukashenka on a dialogue," Mr. Semaska was quoted as saying.
According to the Lithuanian politician, the EU wanted too much too soon in relations with Minsk, which scared Mr. Lukashenka and prompted him to act "irrationally." As a result, the EU shut the door on Minsk, forcing the Belarusian leader to seek closer ties with Russia and increase the country's dependence on Moscow.
Mr. Semaska warned the EU against pursuing the same policy toward Ukraine. //BelaPAN