MOSCOW, October 26. /TASS/. The Kremlin cannot give Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko advice on how to treat protesters, Russian Presidential Spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters on Monday.
"In this case, giving advice publicly would amount to an attempt to interfere in the situation. We have done and will do nothing of the kind," Peskov noted.
He slammed questions about the Kremlin’s potential advice for Lukashenko as a provocation.
According to the spokesman, Russian authorities continue not to interfere in the situation in Belarus where protest rallies after the presidential election persist and think that other countries shouldn’t meddle in these events either. "We are still not going to interfere in these events and we think that nobody should meddle in these events," he said in response to a question on how the Kremlin is treating the "new round of protest activity in Belarus."
The spokesman noted that "it is difficult not to pay attention" to these events, but did not offer his evaluations though. "We shouldn’t, probably, give any evaluations. The evaluations and conclusions should be made by the Belarusian leadership," he explained.
The Kremlin representative specified that the Kremlin follows the events in Belarus. According to him, "interconnection and interdependence of the economies of the two countries are at the highest level." For Russia, it is extremely important how rhythmically and reliably the enterprises in Belarus function, the Kremlin spokesman stressed.
Nationwide demonstrations have engulfed Belarus following the August 9 presidential election. According to the Central Election Commission’s official results, incumbent President Alexander Lukashenko won by a landslide, garnering 80.10% of the vote. His closest rival in the race, Svetlana Tikhanovskaya, came in second, with 10.12% of the ballot. However, she refused to recognize the election’s outcome, and left Belarus for Lithuania. After the results of the exit polls were announced late on August 9, mass protests erupted in downtown Minsk and other Belarusian cities. During the early post-election period, the rallies snowballed into fierce clashes between the protesters and police. The current unrest is being cheered on by the opposition’s Coordination Council, which has been beating the drum for more protests. In response, the Belarusian authorities have castigated the ongoing turmoil and demanded that these unauthorized demonstrations be stopped.