Updated at 14:58,21-10-2016

Milinkevich invites European Parliament president to pro-European forum

10-08-2009, 17:58

Alyaksandr Milinkevich, chairman of the Movement for Freedom, has invited Jerzy Buzek, president of the European Parliament, to attend the Movement's "Belarusian European Forum" as a guest of honor.

The former presidential candidate met with Mr. Buzek in Nidzica, Poland, on August 8, said the press office of the Movement for Freedom.

The politicians discussed the economic, political and human rights situation in Belarus, the issue of political prisoners, the problems of the media and civil society, the authorities' reluctance to register opposition parties and non-governmental organizations and the prospects for cooperation between pro-European forces in Belarus and the European Parliament, the press office said.

"I’m very pleased with the results of our meeting," Mr. Milinkevich was quoted as saying. "Its atmosphere was extremely warm and friendly. Jerzy Buzek assured me that united Europe is interested in supporting positive change in Belarus and views contacts with civil society as an important priority. He expressed hope that productive cooperation in promoting European values in Belarus would continue."

As Deputy Chairman Viktar Karnyayenka told BelaPAN in June, the Movement for Freedom plans to hold the Belarusian European Forum no later than November 2009.

The forum will be organized in cooperation with the Belarusian Christian Democracy party, the Party of Freedom and Progress, Malady Front and other interested organizations, Mr. Karnyayenka said.

Under discussion at the forum will be practical issues, such as ways of getting the European Union to reduce visa fees for Belarusians, he said.

According to Mr. Karnyayenka, there are no plans to nominate a common presidential candidate at the forum.