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Lukashenka Says War In Ukraine May Spread Into Russia, Belarus

  • RFE/RL's Belarus Service

MINSK -- Belarusian President Alyaksandr Lukashenka says that Moscow is deeply involved in the "crisis" in Ukraine and expressed fear that the war there could spill over into Belarus and Russia.

Speaking at an annual news conference on January 29, Lukashenka suggested Russia had a special responsibility to stop the conflict between pro-Russian separatists and government forces in eastern Ukraine.

"My only wish is that Europe...the United States, Russia, which is involved in this crisis to an extreme degree, and Belarus -- and there is a possibility that these phenomena may spread into the territories of Russia and Belarus -- do their best to stop that war," Lukashenka said.

Lukashenka also said Belarus will "never fight with the West to please Russia."

Belarus and Russia have close military ties and are partners in several groupings, including a bilateral Union State.

Moscow's annexation of Crimea from Ukraine and its support for the separatists, which Kyiv and NATO says extends to sending troops and weapons, has alarmed Russia's neighbors.