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Opinions & Interviews

3 Feb 2020

USA, Belarus moving closer towards lifting sanctions

USA, Belarus moving closer towards lifting sanctions
Michael Pompeo

MINSK, 3 February (BelTA) – The United States of America and Belarus are moving closer towards lifting sanctions, U.S. Secretary of State Michael Pompeo told reporters after the talks with Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko on 1 February, BelTA has learned.

“We have been unambiguous about the things that have to happen in order to see that kind of sanctions relief. We are not there yet, but we are very hopeful that moments like we are in right now, days like today, bring us closer to that,” Michael Pompeo said.

In his words, he discussed human rights issues, among other things, at the meeting with the Belarusian head of state. “Belarus has made real progress. Further progress in those areas and others is the only path towards lifting U.S. sanctions,” he said.

The secretary of state emphasized that the two countries considerably improved their diplomatic ties. He recalled that Belarus removed restrictions on the number of  officials serving in the U.S. embassy in Minsk. Now the countries are going to appoint ambassadors. “It has already proven to be beneficial to the United States as well as to Belarus,” Michael Pompeo said.

“We fully support Belarus’ desire to make its own choices, pursue its own partnerships, and play a constructive role in the region. Your nation should not be forced to be dependent on any one partner for your prosperity or for your security,” he added.

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