EU May Impose New Sanctions on Belarus as early as Monday
The European Union may impose new sanctions on Belarus as early as Monday, Reuters reported, citing a diplomat in Brussels.
"Work on the fifth package of sanctions (against the regime in Minsk, this time due to the migrant crisis on the border with Poland) is in full swing. If all goes well, the foreign ministers (of the EU countries) can give the green light (to impose punitive measures) as early as Monday," the quoted diplomat said.
He added that more Belarusian individuals and legal entities could be added to the union's blacklist.
The ambassadors of the EU member states reached a general agreement at a closed-door meeting today that as soon as the fifth package of sanctions against Belarus is adopted, the work on the sixth package of punitive measures should start, said two other diplomats in Brussels.
Another topic of the meeting was the possible repatriation of migrants who gathered at the Belarusian-Polish border through Grodno airport in Belarus, and it is possible that the European Union will financially support the operation. In addition, the permanent representatives of the member states discussed the imposition of sanctions at Minsk airport to prevent foreign airlines from bringing migrants to the Belarusian capital, the two diplomats added.
German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas said today that "the European Union will expand and strengthen sanctions against the regime of (Belarusian President Alexander) Lukashenko," AFP reported.
Speaking to the Bundestag, Maas emphasized the role of transit countries, countries of origin and airlines in migrant trafficking.
"It is high time there were consequences because of the migrant crisis”, he stressed.
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