The President of Russia arrived in Belarus on a working visit to attend a meeting of the Supreme State Council of the Union State of Russia and Belarus. The Russian delegation includes Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev, Federation Council Speaker Valentina Matviyenko and State Duma Speaker Vyacheslav Volodin.
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President of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko: Mr President,
Despite a difficult time, we must continue our work. As we agreed back before the election, we are holding a meeting of the Supreme State Council of the Union State of Russia and Belarus today. It is a good start for the St Petersburg battle. Let us hope that it will go as Russia hopes. We are on your side in this case.
We are ready for a meeting of the Supreme State Council. We have prepared the agenda and coordinated its issues. I suggest that we discuss three main matters. Decisions on all other issues have been prepared in advance and I propose adopting them without discussion.
As we traditionally do, we will polish off the remaining issues, which are in the works and on which we must take a decision, at a restricted format meeting before the meeting of the Supreme State Council. I suggest that we discuss them in a restricted format, if this suits you.
But before we start, I would like to welcome all our comrades and colleagues to Minsk, a hero city and the capital of Belarus. I am sure we will have a productive meeting and that we will resolve all the issues that have not been settled at a meeting of the Union Council of Ministers.
President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Thank you, Mr President.
Thank you for taking the trouble to organise our meeting in Minsk. I know that you have prepared great many topics, primarily at the level of governments and ministries. Our colleagues have moved forward a great deal towards settling the remaining issues. If there are any outstanding questions left, we can discuss them in this format.