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MINSK, January 8. /TASS/. Belarussian President Aleksandr Lukashenko is certain that in his country there is no less democracy and human rights than elsewhere.
"We will go on living in an absolutely democratic society ruled by law precisely we have lived up to this day, however hard we may be criticized," Lukashenko said at a Christmas service at a cathedral in the capital Minsk.
"The critics that kept rebuking us have now gone silent. They have been able to see that Belarus has no less democracy and human rights than other countries. I’ve been saying so all the way. The right to live is the greatest right of all. Nobody needs a democracy where thousands get shot on the streets every year," Lukashenko said.
He promised that the Belarussians would be living in an open society where the individual should feel free to speak one’s mind.
"But once a majority has made a decision and it is legal - then, I beg your pardon, it has to be obeyed. Otherwise we’ll be just two steps away from war," he warned.
Lukashenko recalled that at the end of last year he said the new year would be no easier than 2015.
"Don’t you see what is happening around our country? Many people in our society say: ‘We’ll survive as long as there’s no war.’ I don’t quite agree with this in that a decent life is not a matter of survival, of course. But those who say so certainly have a point," Lukashenko said. "As we’ve been able to see in the neighboring country, when a war is on the wish to have peace is the strongest of all."
"Our number one plea to God is for giving us His protection and for preserving our country in its current shape," he said.
Lukashenko urged nation to be self-reliant.
"We’ve got to count on ourselves. Each of us should remember that. And the state and the government will do all they should to take care of the people. You have my word," he said.