Shushkevich: the real reason for the meeting with Yeltsin in Belovezhskaya Pushcha was the negotiations on gas oil and gas supplies to Belarus. Stanislav Shushkevich spoke about this in an interview with Lente.ru as part of a special project dedicated to the 30th anniversary of the collapse of the Soviet Union.
Shushkevich explained that he had invited the President of the RSFSR Boris Yeltsin there because he believed that he would not refuse visit the recreation center “Viskuli”, which was previously under the jurisdiction of the Politburo of the Central Committee of the CPSU.
“I never thought for a minute that we would begin to resolve much more serious political issues,” the politician admitted. He called himself and the head of the Council of Ministers of Belarus Vyacheslav Kebich the initiators of the meeting. “Otherwise, we would have frozen our citizens. We were constantly looking for an individual meeting with Yeltsin, “said the former head of the Supreme Soviet of Belarus.
At the same time, Shushkevich emphasized that the leaders who initially gathered in Belovezhskaya Pushcha were not going to make a decision on the termination of the existence of the USSR. “But it turned out that we again had to bow at the feet of Gorbachev so that he would authorize Yeltsin's decision. A confusing situation: we seem to want Gorbachev not to interfere with us, but again we must support him so that he can help us, ”the politician said. According to him, it was then that the feeling that “everything can be changed.” intended to make a decision to secede from the USSR.
The Soviet Union collapsed after the conclusion in December 1991 of the Belovezhskaya Agreements by the leaders of the RSFSR, the Ukrainian and Belarusian SSR, who divided a single state. During these events, Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev gave up the fight and was removed from power.