Updated at 21:04,23-03-2021

Lukashenka, Putin discuss Ukraine over phone

Dzmitry Ulasaw, Naviny.by

Alyaksandr Lukashenka and Vladimir Putin discussed the situation in Ukraine during their telephone conversation on March 18, BelaPAN said.

The heads of state continued to exchange their views regarding the acute crisis in Ukraine, according to the Kremlin’s press office.

“The importance and historical significance of what happened today was noted,” the press office said, without specifying whether it was referring to Mr. Lukashenka, Mr. Putin or both. “In full accordance with the nearly unanimous expression of will of the population of Crimea, the peninsula has been reunited with the Russian Federation.”

The Belarusian leader’s press office reported that Messrs. Lukashenka and Putin had a discussion of a number of important issues over the telephone, including an exchange of views regarding the situation in Ukraine and the referendum in Crimea.

They also discussed some issues on the agenda of a meeting of the Supreme Eurasian Economic Council scheduled to take place in Minsk in late April, the press office said.

In Sunday’s referendum, about 93 percent of Crimea’s eligible voters reportedly voted in favor of joining Russia and seceding from Ukraine, according to the region’s central election commission. On Tuesday, an agreement on the incorporation of Crimea into Russia was signed in Moscow.

The move is widely seen as a geopolitical land grab by the Kremlin that is seeking to exploit Ukraine’s relative economic and military weakness.