Europe’s ‘last dictator’ Lukashenko, aims to strengthen ties with Kenya

He is currently the longest serving leader in Europe

Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko

Belarus' longest serving President Alexander Lukashenko has expressed his country desires to strengthen diplomatic ties with Kenya. Lukashenko stated this as he sent greetings to President Uhuru Kenyatta on Jamhuri Day.

Lukashenko who has been in power since 1994 expressed confidence that closer cooperation in trade, the manufacturing sector, agriculture and education will help enhance bilateral ties.

“The Republic of Kenya demonstrates obvious achievements in its development and enjoys deserved attention of the international community,” the head of state remarked.

“Traditionally friendly and mutually respectful relations create a good foundation for the full utilization of the bilateral cooperation potential between our countries,” said Lukashenko.

The authoritarian leader concluded his message by wishing Kenyatta good health and fulfillment of all plans. He also wished Kenyans peace and accord.

Biography

Lukashenko, a former farm manager-turned-minor Communist official, was the only legislator in Soviet Belarus to vote against his nation’s independence from Russia in 1991.

Three years later, at only 39-years-old, he came to power promising to “reintegrate” the two nations.

Lukashenko was the first Belarusian president, an office no one else has yet held. He won a sixth term last year in a disputed election that destroyed Minsk’s relationships with Western governments.

After the disputed election, thousands of protesters and opposition activists were detained and opposition leader Svetlana Tikhanovskaya was forced out of Belarus after claiming victory.

The United States, European Union and the United Kingdom now do not recognise Lukashenko as a legitimate president and have imposed sanctions that have greatly affected the economy.

Curbs already in place include blacklisting of Lukashenko, his son and 165 other Belarusian officials, as well as restrictions on trade in potash, an important export.

In agriculture and horticulture potash is the common term for nutrient forms of the element potassium (K).

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