Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko commended Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan for pursuing an independent policy during a meeting with Turkish ambassador to Belarus Mustafa Ozacan in Minsk on Monday.
Lukashenko also praised Erdoğan for excelling in meeting the expectations of the Turkish people.
“We have a great interest in your sovereign independent policy. You solve issues the way the Turkish people need. In this, of course, your president excelled, one might say, all the expectations of the Turkish people,” Lukashenko noted.
On bilateral relations, Lukashenko said Belarus and Türkiye did a lot of work to deepen relations, but still, there were some issues that needed to be resolved.
“We really hope Türkiye will lend us a shoulder in this difficult situation. I would like to discuss with you a number of issues that we will have to solve together with you in the near future,” he stressed.
According to Lukashenko, Ankara and Minsk have similar positions on many issues of international relations, including the crisis in Ukraine, where Moscow launched a “special military operation” in February 2022.
“We have talked about this more than once. Both Türkiye and Belarus speak from the standpoint of a diplomatic solution to this conflict,” he said.
The Belarusian leader reminded the two countries once set a goal to increase the bilateral trade turnover to $1.5 billion.
“If I am not mistaken, we have already had a turnover of more than a billion for the second year. We need to reach this level (of $1,5 billion) taking into account we have such opportunities,” he said.
Ozacan, for his part, thanked Lukashenko for the opportunity to meet to discuss issues on both bilateral and international agenda.
The ambassador also conveyed warm greetings from the Turkish president and words of sincere gratitude to the Belarusian side for the assistance provided after the Feb. 6 earthquakes in southern Türkiye.
“We were amazed by the solidarity of the Belarusian people, and we will never forget the help that the Belarusian people gave us,” he said.