Government of Belarus Request That European Union Head of Delegation and Polish Ambassador Return to Capitals

Press Statement
Mark C. Toner
Deputy Spokesperson, Office of the Spokesperson
Washington, DC
February 28, 2012

The United States notes with deep regret the Government of Belarus’ decision to request that the EU Head of Delegation and Polish Ambassador to Belarus return to their capitals for consultations, while simultaneously recalling its Permanent Representative in Brussels and Ambassador in Warsaw. These actions, like the expulsion of the U.S. Ambassador to Belarus in 2008 and the closure of the OSCE Office in Minsk in March 2011, are only deepening Belarus’ self-isolation. The United States takes note of High Representative Catherine Ashton’s statement today, which announced that ambassadors of all the EU Member States in Minsk will be withdrawn for consultations to their capitals, in an expression of solidarity and unity. The United States stands with our partners and joins them in calling on Belarus to end its repression of civil society and the democratic opposition.

PRN: 2012/299