Poland: new sanctions imposed on 365 Belarusians

No less than 159 deputies are among those targeted. Poland has imposed new sanctions on 365 Belarusians, and announced the suspension of the only border crossing with this country for trucks registered in Belarus and Russia, the Polish Interior Ministry announced on Monday 29 may. This unique road crossing of the Polish-Belarusian border, at Kukuryki, will be “suspended sine die from June 1”according to a ministerial decree.

Dozens of judges, local officials, athletes and pro-Minsk journalists are among the nationals affected by these sanctions. Sanctions are also imposed on “persons responsible for organizing illegal immigration to Poland and the Baltic States”, according to the press release. Warsaw accuses Belarus, Russia’s main ally, of orchestrating the influx of migrants into Poland, and erected a steel wall along the border to deter irregular crossings. The targeted Belarusians will all be banned from entering Poland and the Schengen area, and their assets will be frozen, the ministry said.

“These people promoted the Belarusian regime and participated in legitimizing and supporting the repressive policy of the Minsk authorities”, says an official press release. According to the ministry, this decision responds “to maintain the draconian verdict in the Andrzej Poczobut case”, a Polish-Belarusian journalist sentenced to eight years in prison for criticizing the regime of Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko. On Friday, a Belarusian court rejected his appeal and upheld the sentence.

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