A continuation of EU sanctions

On Thursday the 21st of October, EU diplomats agreed on a continuation of EU sanctions against Belarusian authorities. The sanctions were introduced in 2006, after violence and election-rigging in relation to the presidential elections, and included a travel ban to the EU for leading Belarusian officials.

Since 2008, as a means of trying to warm up relations between Belarus and the EU, exceptions to the ban have been made regarding the authoritarian leader of Belarus, Aleksander Lukashenko and several officials from the Lukashenko regime. These persons have in practice been free to travel within the union. The new sanction package means a continuation of this policy, meaning that the travel ban in practice is implemented only on the five most notorious persons previously acting as government officials.

The sanctions were accompanied by the approval of a communiqué; in which the EU leaders stress the importance of a continued political dialogue between the EU and Belarus, and deeply regret the lack of progress in areas such as human rights, freedom of speech and assembly and rule of law. Belarusian authorities are also urged to ensure that the upcoming presidential elections in December are in conformity with international norms and standards.

Civil Rights Defenders monitors the situation in Belarus and regularly compiles reports regarding the human rights situation in the country, in cooperation with more than 50 Belarusian and international organizations. The reports are designed to inform policymakers about developments in Belarus during the ongoing EU-Belarus Dialogue Process.

Categories: News.
Tags: EU-Belarus dialogue and Sanctions.
Regions: Belarus.