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EU Envoys to Belarus to Get ‘Case by Case’ Treatment

RIA Novosti

18:02 05/04/2012 MINSK, April 5 (RIA Novosti) - The return of EU ambassadors to Belarus will be handled on a case-by-case basis, President Alexander Lukashenko said on Thursday.

“The foreign minister and I have agreed that we will consider each country and each ambassador on an individual basis,” state agency Belta quoted him as saying.

“We will build our policy with regard to the return of European [EU] ambassadors to Belarus on a business-like basis.”

He also said Belarus will not seek Russian help in building its relations with the EU countries.

“Russia has plenty of its own problems to deal with. So we need not saddle our close partners with our problems in relations with Western Europe,” he said.

In late February European Union states decided to recall all their ambassadors from Belarus after Minsk requested the EU and Polish ambassadors to leave the country.

EU members had expanded a blacklist of Belarusian officials subject to restrictive measures, namely police officers and court officials considered responsible for arrests and persecution of opposition activists. The sanctions envision an asset freeze and EU entry ban.

In mid-March, the EU added 12 Belarusian individuals and 29 companies to its sanctions list in a bid to put more pressure on Lukashenko.

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