There are worrying signs Russia might consider incorporating Belarus, Lithuanian Foreign Minister Linas Linkevičius said on Monday.
“Tensions remain, since there are still many remaining questions regarding the so-called international assistance from Russia,” he told reporters after his meeting with the Lithuanian president and heads of the country’s political groups.
“I believe Russia itself is also considering what to do. There are all sorts of signs that are very worrying. If they are thinking of just incorporating the country ‘in a simple way’, so I don’t know what the consequences could be,” said Linkevičius.
“We will see what path the leadership and everyone else will take. And for us, it’s very important to clearly state our position and consolidate the international community,” he underlined.
According to Linkevičius, the scenario in Belarus would be different from the 2014–2015 events in Ukraine, as the regime in Minsk doesn’t accept mediators and the country’s opposition is too fragmented.
“There are always differences, be it the Rose Revolution or the Orange Revolution, or not a revolution at all. Obviously, people are rising and it would be unreasonable from the moral side and also practically speaking to ignore the voice of the people,” he said.
Tensions in Belarus have been high for the past two weeks since August 9 when President Alexander Lukashenko, according to officials, received over 80 percent of votes an.
Opposition supporters say the results were falsified. Thousands of people have taken to the streets to protest, with the authorities using force to crack down on protesters.
Amid ongoing mass protests in Belarus, Alexander Lukashenko warned about NATO’s threat on Sunday, with the country’s Defence Ministry saying drills close to the Lithuanian border would start on Monday.