Estonia adds 28 more Belarusian officials to entry ban list
The foreign affairs ministry has issued a five-year entry ban on 28 more Belarusian officials.
The ban, which entered into effect Friday, falls under domestic legislation, the International Sanctions Act, and the list of Belarusian officials listed as barred entry to Estonia now stretches to 156, the foreign ministry says.
"Considering the fact that the situation in Belarus remains very tense and the authorities are exerting increasing pressure on peaceful protesters, we cannot stand by calmly," foreign minister Urmas Reinsalu said via a ministry press release.
"Sanctions is our way of showing our position on this issue and we are renewing our call on the Belarusian authorities to end the violence against the people of Belarus immediately and release all those detained at the protests, including political prisoners," Reinsalu continued.
"At the meeting of EU foreign affairs ministers Thursday, I called on my colleagues to impose additional sanctions on Belarusian officials and add the companies that support the Lukashenko regime to the EU sanctions list," he added.
The individuals named on the list have played a central role in either falsifying election results in the August Belarus presidential elections, which returned Alexander Lukashenko for a sixth consecutive term since 1994, or in using violence against peaceful protesters in the crackdown which followed the elections and continues to the present.
The ban will run from November 20 to August 30 2025, the foreign ministry says.
The officials listed will be subject to prohibition on entry to the Republic of Estonia from 20 November 2020 until 30 August 2025.
Latvia and Lithuania have also published updated lists of Belarusian officials barred entry – both countries, unlike Estonia, share a border with Belarus – and additional EU sanctions are underway.
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Editor: Andrew Whyte