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Lukashenko downplays Embassy attack

Nov 14, 2012
From wire reports

VILNIUS - Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko says he does not call last week’s incident at the Lithuanian Embassy in Minsk a terrorist act, reports ELTA. “Recently, the so-called Molotov cocktails were thrown into the territory of Lithuania’s Embassy in Minsk. Earlier the same happened at the Russian Embassy. It was not some kind of a terrorist act,” he said Monday while visiting Belarus’ state university of economics.

He also said that the persons who threw the bottles with flammable liquid into the Russian Embassy compound were found and are now detained. “Lithuania was squealing: ‘political prisoners,’ but when they received some bottles they called it a terrorist act,” the Belarusian president said. According to him, it is not only a case of double standards but also “rustic politics.”

On Nov. 8, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania summoned the Ambassador of Belarus to Lithuania Vladimir Drazhin to protest the attack on the Lithuanian Embassy in Minsk. Two bottles with flammable liquid were thrown at the Embassy on Nov. 6.
A request to thoroughly investigate the incident, cooperate with and provide information about the investigation to competent Lithuanian institutions and to ensure the security of the Lithuanian Embassy in Minsk was handed to the ambassador.

Drazhin said that Belarus regretted the incident. He noted that the investigation of malignant hooliganism received a lot of attention. The Ambassador assured that competent Belarusian institutions would expeditiously inform their Lithuanian colleagues about the investigation of this incident.
The Investigation Committee of Belarus is investigating the incident.

Despite the occasional hooliganism around the embassies that inflame relations, the first ever meeting of Belarusian and Lithuanian ethnic minority leaders will be held in Vilnius in a move towards better cooperation.
The upcoming meeting is organized by the Embassy of Belarus in Lithuania, together with a representative from the religious and nationalities’ affairs, authorized by Lukashenko and the Association of Lithuanian-Belarusians Non-Governmental Organizations.

The leaders of ethnic communities will seek to expand mutual cooperation, to revive the feelings of Belarusian society living abroad and encourage the spread of the Belarusian national culture across the world.
During the event, various dance groups will perform, and visitors will be entertained by singers from South Korea and Ukraine.

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