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Minister Byrne welcomes the work of An Taoiseach, Micheal Martin, in relation to the situation in Be

Minister Byrne welcomes the work of An Taoiseach, Micheál Martin, in relation to the situation in Belarus

 

An Taoiseach Micheál Martin and Thomas Byrne, the Minister for European Affairs travelled to Brussels at the end of last week for a special meeting of the European Council. As part of the agenda, the Leaders discussed the ongoing human rights situation in Belarus.

 

The European Council reiterated that it does not recognise the results of the recent presidential election, which saw Lukashenko declared the winner. The Leaders condemned the violence by Belarusian authorities against peaceful protesters, as well as the ongoing intimidation, arbitrary arrests and detentions.

 

Minister Byrne commented:

 

An Taoiseach was forthright in his condemnation of the action of the Belarusian authorities. The people of Belarus deserve to have their democratic right to elect a President respected. The actions of the authorities are totally unacceptable and I welcome the agreement reached at the European Council to impose sanctions”.

 

In view of efforts by Belarus to reduce the diplomatic representation of some EU Member States, Minister Byrne added:

 

Ireland fully supports the statement of the High Representative on the proposed reduction in Lithuania and Poland’s representation in Belarus. These measures will weaken EU unity, which was clearly reaffirmed by the European Council last week.”

 

ENDS

Press Office

5 October 2020

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