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Moscow offers Lukashenka Prime Minister’s job after unification - Svanidze
Prominent Russian journalist and public figure Nikolay Svanidze said during an interview with the Moscow-based radio station Serebryanny Dozhd about the offer that Belarus President Alexander Lukashenka had allegedled received from the Russian leadership. According to Mr Svanidze, he received this information ‘rather highly placed sources in Minsk.’ He said:
"The rumors are that Moscow keeps putting various kinds of pressure on Minsk in light of the ongoing negotiations between Russia and Belarus on unification. Lukashenka has received a new offer from the Kremlin as part of the trade, that is to become the prime minister of the unified state… I don’t know the details. Why not the president?... When something big and something small are united, it is natural for the leader of the bigger to be in charge... What’s the point of unification? Everything is re-set. As I was told, Lukashenka has been offered to be the prime minister for six years that can be possibly extended up to twelve years...
There are obvious flaws in this proposal. Namely, what kind of guarantees can Lukashenka offer his nomenklatura and his son Kolya? Nevertheless, the offer has been made and is being thoroughly reviewed… I take this offer seriously, because this can be one of the solutions for the [Vladimir Putin’s] ‘2024 problem’ without having to wait till 2024.
Offers being made are increasingly attractive. However, they are accompanied with some promises that do not look attractive if Lukashenka rejects those offers."
During the live chat in the radio station’s studio, it was also voiced that the majority of Belarusians object to the unification with Russia and that the youth is mainly West-oriented. “But it will be Lukashenka who will decide,” Mr Svanidze stressed.