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03 June 2021, 18:43

Belarus retaliates for U.S. sanctions against Belneftekhim

Anatoly Glaz. An archive photo
Anatoly Glaz. An archive photo

MINSK, 3 June (BelTA) – Belarus has taken retaliatory measures in response to the U.S. sanctions against the Belarusian state petrochemical concern Belneftekhim,

Anatoly Glaz, Press Secretary of the Belarusian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, said answering a question by the Sputnik Belarus outlet about the U.S. sanctions against Belneftekhim, BelTA has learned.

The previously announced unilateral U.S. sanctions against several Belarusian enterprises of the petrochemical complex formally came into effect on 3 June. “These are illegal actions that run afoul of international law and seek to put pressure on a sovereign state. These measures will harm employees of these companies, ordinary Belarusians. Yet, the USA will certainly keep insisting that these smart bombs, oops, sorry, I mean targeted sanctions, are meant to support Belarusian people. In fact, this support will have this form. It is encouraging that more and more Belarusians have come to understand it,” the spokesman said.

To emphasize the double standards of the U.S. counterparts, Anatoly Glaz quoted the Budapest Memorandum on Security Assurances signed by the United States in 1994: “The United States of America reaffirms its commitment to the Republic of Belarus, in accordance with the principles of the CSCE Final Act, to refrain from using economic pressure on Belarus to influence its politics...”

According to him, Belarus expected such a turn of events. “The state will do everything possible to ensure that these destructive measures do not affect our people and labor collectives,” he said.

“As a sovereign country, we cannot ignore this unfriendly attack. Therefore, today the Ministry of Foreign Affairs summoned the charge d'affaires of the United States in Belarus to announce the retaliatory measures. Among them are the reduction of diplomatic and administrative and technical personnel of the U.S. diplomatic mission, tightening the visa requirements and restricting the work of U.S. specialists in Belarus on a temporary basis. We have also rescinded the authorization for the U.S. Agency for International Development to work in Belarus,” Anatoly Glaz noted.

He described the retaliatory measures as targeted, designed to send a clear signal to the United States about the futility of pressure and coercion in relations with Belarus. “As before, we do not want to escalate the situation and are ready to continue contacts with the United States on the principles of equality and mutual respect," Anatoly Glaz said.

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