A telephone prankster with the moniker Vovan222 has allegedly duped Belarusian president Alyaksandr Lukashenka
into extracting a commitment to provide former Ukrainian president Viktor Yanukovych
with political asylum in Belarus should he request it.
The Ukrainian community organization EuroMaydan
claims that Vovan222
into thinking he was speaking with the former Ukrainian president's son Viktor Jr.
An audiotape of the conversation was widely circulated on the LB.ua,
an independent news website.
“My father’s situation is not very good, you know. Can we solve the problem by moving him to Belarus for awhile, should the need arise?” – asks the man with the voice of Yanukovych Jr.
“Do not forget that his roots are in Belarus. And there is his village there. So if he decides to return to his village, I wouldn't dare interfere,” responds the man purportedly to be Alyaksandr Lukashenka
. "Just tell him to give me 24 hours notice"
Though a close ally of Russia and heavily dependent on its energy subsidies, Belarus maintains that Ukraine's territorial intergrity mustn't be violated.