Updated at 19:48,25-10-2020

Rymasheuski: Among the opposition there are lobbyists of the regime


Brussels Office "For Democratic Belarus" offered to delete 25 Belarusian officials from the list of banned entry - this statement was made yesterday by co-chairman of the organizing committee of BCD party Vital Rymasheuski. And added, that "publishing this information is aimed at these people to stop".

On this the office has answered by the commentary of Olga Stuzhinskaya, where she tried to argue her position.

Which will be the effects of deletion of names from the list of banned entry, who from Belarusian opposition are lobbying interests of the regime and why? Co-chairman of the BCD Vital Rymasheuski shared answers to these questions in continuation of the discussion with UDF.BY correspondent.

- Olga Stuzhynskaya says that rectors of universities, for example, should be removed from the "black list" because without cooperation with the EU is not possible to reform the Belarusian educational system. Why, in your opinion, it's wrong to take this step, despite the strong argument?

- Because rectors of Belarusian universities are still used for direct pressure on Belarusian democratic students-activists. In particular, the last incident happened in BSUCA (formerly the Institute of Culture). Unknown people for two hours were questioning a girl in the rector's office about her membership in the BCD without any reasons. And there are many examples of this: I don't agree that something has changed substantially since 2006.

- Why then Stuzhynskaya ignores this aspect?

- In fact, there is no sense in trying to look for a sensible logic here, because there are no arguments, but only pretexts to discredit the EU's policy towards Belarus. But you can find such excuses of all kinds. This includes finding a man who was on the list, but died. The initiators are well oriented in the European Union policies and understand how difficult is to make the decisions about this list. And, of course, there are always lobbyists of the regime, even among European politicians, who are trying to shake in different ways a firm political stand of the EU towards Belarus.

- Why?

- The ultimate goal is a complete revision and abolition of the list "of banned entry" to discredit the EU politics towards Belarus and to show its inefficiency. The whole strategy of the EU is questioned and interests of the regime as a whole are lobbied. Regime is interested to change nothing in Belarus, to continue to destroy the independent opposition and at the same time to restore a good, full-length relationship with the EU. And lobbyists from the opposition help the regime with this.

- From the Belarusian opposition? Whom it could be profitable?

- Yes, this is particular group of people known in Belarusian opposition environment. So it's wrong now to focus all attention on the personality of Olga Stuzhinskaya because the office "For Democratic Belarus" is not independent: it's only lobbying the initiatives, which are formed by certain politicians in Belarus. Whatever they may say, because some of them have already managed to disown from one's involvement. But it's really dangerous: in the race for places in "Lukashenka's" constructive opposition these people are willing to step over everyone. Even over the victims of repressions.

- If to talk about time, then why such a question is stated right now?

- According to unofficial information, the list "of banned entry" just going to be expand. And statement of this question now aims to spoil the expansion of the list in particular, and to compromise the policy of the EU as a whole. To prove that it is ineffective, while this politics is dialogic, but principled and moral. Moreover, the initiators are cynically hide behind the names of political prisoners, and these are people who don't feel repressions on themselves.

- Also, Stuzhinskaya mentions specific names, for example, the businessman Peftiev. Is it lobbying of certain people?

- No, we are not talking about lobbying of someone specific from the list. Because the establishment of direct contact with Peftiev, for example, is impossible for the democratic forces: the situation is controlled by the secret services, which won't allow this. This is the lobbying of the regime as a whole and its interests. The presence of these two dozen people is just a pretext to review the whole strategy of the EU's relations to Belarus, i.e, to return to the support of the regime when there are political prisoners. That's the main goal. And who is going to be deleted from the list - this is only the details, which don't play a significant role.