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The United States must reduce its diplomatic presence in Belarus

The Belarusian government is demanding that it reduce its workforce in Belarus by five by September 1.

The government in Belarus has ordered the reduction of its diplomatic presence in the United States. The State Department in Minsk announced on Wednesday that the staff of the US embassy in Minsk would be reduced by five by September 1. The Belarusian government has responded to new US sanctions against the United States, condemning Foreign Office spokeswoman Anatoly Glass in a statement condemning Washington’s “public hostility.”

The United States imposed new sanctions on Minsk on Monday, a year after the controversial re-election of Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko. US President Joe Biden has declared that the “actions of the Lukashenko regime” are “an illegal attempt to stay in power at any cost.” Great Britain and Canada announced further punitive measures.

Lukashenko, who has ruled for nearly three decades, was declared the winner of the presidential election a year ago in defiance of allegations of massive fraud. This provoked unprecedented mass protests in Belarus, which were brutally suppressed by security forces. Since then, the authorities have acted with extreme seriousness against government critics.

(What / AFP)

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