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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Belarussian President Called Brother-in-Arms

MINSK -- Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez called for a strategic partnership with Belarus, saying Belarussian leader Alexander Lukashenko is a "brother-in-arms" and lamenting the pressure he said the United States was putting on Minsk and Caracas.

Chavez told Lukashenko that economic and military ties between them were developing, and he referred to the United States as "the Empire."

"There are few nations in the world that are put under as strong pressure from the Empire as Belarus," Chavez said. He called on Lukashenko to develop relations in the form of a union and a strategic alliance.

"The enemy's forces are trying to turn the world into a unipolar world. We must overcome many obstacles from these forces. The Empire that has called us dictatorships, it wants to create a world dictatorship," he said.

Chavez also joked about what he said were the many successes the two countries had seen since his last visit to Belarus, in 2006.

"If in one year we were able to do so much, then what will be able to do in the 20 years that we will be in power?" Chavez asked.

"Don't scare the Americans," Lukashenko responded, smiling.