2021.10.27 17:43

EU's 5th Belarus sanction package to target officials involved in migrant trafficking – official

LRT.lt2021.10.27 17:43

The fifth package of the EU sanctions on Belarus will target the Belarusian authorities responsible for organising irregular migration to the EU, Deutsche Welle quoted Dirk Schuebel, head of the EU delegation to Belarus.

The package of sanctions will include individuals and companies that contribute to transporting migrants from the Middle East and Africa to the EU through Belarus, Schuebel said at the European Parliament’s Foreign Affairs Committee’s hearing on Tuesday.

Read more: Migration crisis in Baltics and Poland

According to him, the EU’s demands to the Belarusian authorities remain unchanged and include the release of political prisoners, end of repressions, and new and democratic elections.

“Unfortunately, all of our appeals went unheard. Therefore, we are now preparing the fifth package of sanctions which will likely focus primarily on the issue of migration, but not only,” Schuebel said.

He did not provide further details, because the EU always keeps the sanctions secret until their official announcement, according to Deutsche Welle. He said, however, that the discussions on possible sanctions on the Belarusian Airlines Belavia are also continuing in Brussels.

Schuebel added that the EU managed to persuade the Iraqi authorities to stop flights to Belarus at least until the end of the year. According to him, Brussels is conducting similar talks with several other countries, including Pakistan and Turkey.

The fifth package of the EU sanctions on Belarus is expected to be adopted in November.

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