Publication: Monitor Volume: 3 Issue: 113

The leaders of the forcibly dissolved Belarusan parliament confirmed yesterday their tentative acceptance of negotiations with the administration of President Alyaksandr Lukashenka. During a meeting in Minsk with a prominent German Bundestag deputy and OSCE representative, Gert Weisskirchen, the legitimate parliament’s chairman and vice-chairman, Syamyon Sharetski and Henadz Karpenka, agreed to enter into talks with the regime on the condition that the talks are open and mediated by international organizations. The talks will aim at finding a mutually acceptable solution to the constitutional crisis in Belarus, and could possibly result in the organization of free parliamentary elections. Weisskirchen reaffirmed that the OSCE will continue to recognize the forcibly dissolved parliament as the sole legitimate body of representative power in Belarus. (Belapan, June 9)

Also yesterday, Leni Fischer, chairwoman of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, reaffirmed that body’s decision to suspend official Minsk’s guest status, maintain contacts with political forces in Belarus, invite the legitimate parliament’s representatives to CE meetings, and encourage negotiations. (Interfax, June 9) The European Union adheres to a similar stance, and its fact-finding mission to Belarus called for government-opposition negotiations to resolve the constitutional conflict.

The Popular Front, mainstay of the extraparliamentary opposition, believes that the opposition is poorly placed to negotiate with Lukashenka at this stage. The Front’s strategy is to build mass support and to press for Lukashenka’s resignation as the solution to the constitutional crisis.

Senior Armenian Official on Possible Accession to Russia-Belarus Union.