Belarus EU detente on cards as reward for Lukashenko’s role in Ukraine peace talks

President of Belarus Aleksandr Lukashenko

President of Belarus Aleksandr Lukashenko

Belarus – EU detente: The role played by Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko – the man once dubbed “Europe’s last dictator” – could thaw relations between his country and the EU, according to Latvia’s foreign minister and chari of the EU’s ministerial council Edgars Rinkevics.”I believe we have a window of opportunity,” he said yesterday. Unlike Ukraine and other ex-Soviet republics tempted by free trade with the EU, Lukashenko has remained broadly aligned with Russia, signing up for President Vladimir Putin’s Eurasian Union but has nevertheless also criticised Moscow’s actions in Ukraine. Electoral and human rights abuses have seen him and some 200 of his supporters being banned from traveling to the EU since 2011.