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Putin calls for Russia-Belarus unification

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  • Greg Cannon
    http://washingtontimes.com/upi/20050726-115734-5823r.htm Putin pushes for merger with Belarus Jul. 27, 2005 at 7:06AM Russian President Vladimir Putin told
    Message 1 of 1 , Jul 27, 2005
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      http://washingtontimes.com/upi/20050726-115734-5823r.htm

      Putin pushes for merger with Belarus

      Jul. 27, 2005 at 7:06AM

      Russian President Vladimir Putin told members of a
      political youth movement that the country needs
      unification with neighboring Belarus.
      "We do not want to offend those who value
      Belarusian culture, language and history, which we are
      proud of as well," Putin said, according to Novosti.
      "However, in a broad sense, we are a single nation and
      we will only benefit if we unite, having gained
      advantages in relations with other countries."
      Putin met with members of the Nashi movement at
      the Zavidovo state residence in Tver region.
      Russia and Belarus signed an agreement in 1999
      seeking eventual reunification. But negotiators have
      been unable to agree on a draft constitution and any
      merger of the currency is on indefinite hold.
      President Alexander Lukashenko of Belarus said
      on Tuesday that part of the problem is that Russia
      wants to model the merged state on the European Union
      while Belarus would like it to resemble the Soviet Union.
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