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Statement by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Belarus

Minsk, November 19, 2004

On November 18, 2004 the United Nations Organization made a principal decision not to consider a question on Belarus submitted to the General Assembly by the United States and the European Union.

The United Nations Organization did not yield to massive pressure from the United States and other Western powers and declined to consider the draft resolution On the situation of human rights in Belarus they initiated.

One hundred and three UN member states did not support the draft resolution, thus stripping the United States and the EU of the lever of political pressure on Belarus under cover of authority of the international community.

The Republic of Belarus has always opposed the use of pressure, double standards and manipulation in relations between states, especially, in such sensitive sphere as protection and promotion of human rights.

In the course of the intensive campaign on explaining its position, which preceded the UN decision, Belarus has been stressing: real contribution of the world community to protection and promotion of human rights is possible only through cooperation, dialogue and equal interaction. The vote shows that the position of Belarus is shared by the majority of the members of the United Nations.

The campaign to adopt the resolution on Belarus was accompanied with western countries unprecedented pressure on the governments of the UN member states. Nevertheless, the majority of states supported our point that a move to adopt a resolution on Belarus would be a political step with the idea of pressure on a country standing behind, rather than concern over human rights.

Well-considered and sound decision on the US-EU draft resolution was possible owing to intensive consultations with the national delegations in New York and in the capitals of sovereign states. Being a member of the Non-Aligned Movement, Belarus has also actively used the potential of this competent and powerful organization.

The Republic of Belarus expresses its sincere gratitude to the states, which, showing the adherence to principle and impartiality, have voted in support of our country. They have voted for justice, equality and respect in the international relations and against any interference into domestic affairs of a sovereign state.

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