Minsk will reduce the number of US embassy diplomatic and administrative staff in connection with sanctions against Belarusian state-owned enterprises introduced by the US administration. Belarus will revoke USIIT, a US foreign aid agency.
According to Belarusian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Anatoly Heas, sanctions are timely and “send a clear signal of meaningless pressure and coercion in relations with Belarus.”
Belarus is not only reducing the number of diplomatic and administrative staff at the US embassy in Belarus, but also canceling the US-led Foreign Aid Agencies’ (USAID) permit to operate in the country, making new restrictions on visa procedures more difficult and restricting American professionals working there.
read more: Americans are warned to travel to Belarus
“Illegal activities, contrary to international law”
Belarus’s Foreign Ministry has described sanctions unilaterally introduced by Washington as “unconstitutional and intended to put pressure on a sovereign state”. A ministry spokesman pointed out that the restrictions would affect “employees of licensed companies and ordinary citizens.”
In connection with last year’s repression of civil society in Belarus, the United States announced in April that sanctions against nine Belarusian state-owned enterprises would be resumed as of June 3. These are: Belnaftachim Concern and its US branch, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Crotno Azot, Krono Simvolokno, Sachogroska, Napton, Bonak Stekovokno and Belarusian Oil Trading House.
Key Photo Source: Andrei Liankevich / EPA / BAP
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