Ukraine proposes sanctions against top Belarus security officials, Lukashenko's son

WION Web Team
Kyiv, Ukraine Updated: Jul 09, 2021, 03:33 PM IST


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The decision on sanctions against 52 Belarusian officials, including President Alexander Lukashenko's son Viktor, has been submitted to President Volodymyr Zelenskiy.

Ukraine's government on Friday proposed the introduction of personal sanctions against 52 Belarusian officials, including President Alexander Lukashenko's son Viktor.

The sanctions come as a result of the involvement of Belarusian officials in "falsifying" the results of the 2020 presidential election and human rights violations.

The decision on sanctions was made by the government and submitted to President Volodymyr Zelenskiy's security and defence council. If the council approves, it will be enacted by presidential decree.

Friday's text said personal economic sanctions against Minsk officials will be imposed for a three-year period and include a ban on visits and transit through Ukraine, and an asset freeze.

Among those targeted are almost all current and former leaders of the interior ministry, state security committee (KGB), presidential advisers and aides, and heads of the prosecutor general's office and the central election commission.

Ukraine froze contact with neighbouring Belarus last year and joined with the European Union in condemning the elections by calling them ''rigged.'' Lukashenko denies electoral fraud.

Lukashenko, the long-serving authoritarian leader who sparked the rallies by claiming a sixth presidential term, has drawn condemnation from the West whose leaders say the August 9 election was not free or fair.

Western nations have slapped a slew of sanctions on Lukashenko and his regime but they appear to have had limited effect as he maintains backing from key ally and creditor Russia.

Most recently, leaders in the West targeted key sectors of the struggling Belarusian economy to punish Lukashenko's government for intercepting a Ryanair plane in May and arresting an opposition activist and his girlfriend on board.

(With inputs from agencies)