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EU foreign ministers agree to slap sanctions on Belarusian president soon — source

The additions to the blacklist will be formally approved and enter into force later, TASS was told

BRUSSELS, October 12. /TASS/. The EU foreign ministers have agreed on the EU’s common stance on imposing sanctions on Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko at a meeting in Luxembourg. A European diplomatic source informed TASS on Monday that the decision had been prompted by the Belarusian leader’s inauguration.

"The foreign ministers agreed on a common stance on adding [Belarusian] President Alexander Lukashenko to the Belarus sanctions list, given his inauguration after the election, which was not free or fair," the interlocutor said.

The additions to the blacklist will be formally approved and enter into force later, another source said. "The ministers agreed to proceed with work to add new individuals, including Lukashenko, to the blacklist," the European diplomat said.

He noted that this stance would be announced at the EU summit on October 15-16. The External Action Service will then prepare a new version of the blacklist, which will come into force after its formal approval by the Council of the EU and publication in the EU Official Journal.

Experience shows that full implementation of the procedure can take from a week to several months. Before the meeting of the EU Council at the foreign ministers’ level, some of its members suggested refraining from targeted sanctions against Alexander Lukashenko in order to leave the door open for dialogue with Minsk.