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30 January 2018, 13:58

U.S. diplomat supports abolition of all sanctions if Belarus takes steps

Robert Riley. An archive photo
Robert Riley. An archive photo

MINSK, 30 January (BelTA) – I am in favor of lifting all the sanctions on Belarus provided there are steps on the part of Belarus, U.S. Charge d'affaires to Belarus Robert Riley told the media on 30 January, BelTA informs.

I discuss this topic with my colleagues at different levels all the time. I also discuss it in different Belarusian ministries. I always maintain that my interest and our interest are in the full abolition of sanctions, Robert Riley said. The sides, however, are not at that point yet, he added.

The USA has reviewed the existing sanctions every six months during the last two years and has suspended them for another period of time, the diplomat recalled. The next review will take place in April. “I cannot predict the results since they will discuss and analyze a great deal of questions. We always say frankly which steps should be made to make the abolition of sanctions possible. We will proceed with these discussions with our Belarusian partners and we will do everything to reach such a state in our relations when the abolition of sanctions is possible,” Robert Riley remarked.

The U.S. sanctions against Belarus damage the bilateral relations, Robert Riley underlined. He also stressed that Belarus and the United States cooperate in many fields. “We interact in such areas as international security, border security, and fight against crime. We discuss matters related to finances and economy,” he clarified. “Belarus-USA relations represent quite a wide scope of activities. The sanctions certainly cast a shadow on them. We are working hard to make the abolition of sanctions possible,” the diplomat added.

When asked whether the U.S. ambassador will return to Belarus, Robert Riley noted that the two countries regularly discuss this topic, and both sides are interested in settling this question.

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