Lukashenko will get $1.5 bln mortgage from Putin

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Russia’s president Vladimir Putin has agreed with Belarus’ president Alexander Lukashenko to a $1.5-billion mortgage for Minsk.

Both leaders met in Russia’s Black Sea resort of Sochi for his or her first face-to-face assembly since Belarus erupted in protest following a disputed election.

Belarus has been rocked by 5 weeks of protests after Lukashenko, who has led the nation since 1994, gained a landslide victory within the August 9 election. The vote was denounced by EU officers, and compelled Lukashenko to look to Moscow for help.

The opposition says that Lukashenko’s predominant challenger, Svetlana Tikhanovskaya, was the rightful winner and desires new elections. Tikhanovskaya, who fled to Lithuania after the vote, gained solely about 10% to Lukashenko’s 80%, in response to the election committee.

Human rights activists have repeatedly accused Belarusian riot police of brutally suppressing peaceable marches within the nation. The authorities has denied the claims. Tikhanovskaya described Monday’s mortgage as Russia “paying for our beatings”.

“A friend is in trouble, and I say that sincerely,” Lukashenko informed Putin in televised remarks in the beginning of the assembly. “There is a red line, you also know about this, more than I do, you had to make these lines clear in Chechnya when you were a young president”, he added.

Russia and Belarus have a union treaty envisaging shut political, financial and army ties, however Lukashenko has repeatedly accused the Kremlin of urgent Belarus to desert its independence.

“We see Belarus as our closest ally and we will undoubtedly fulfill all our obligations”, Putin informed Lukashenko throughout the talks.