(RTTNews) - The European Union (EU) extended for nine more months ease in travel ban against Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko.
The EU foreign ministers' meeting in Brussels took the decision Monday to encourage Minsk implement democratic reforms and prevent Russia from influencing its neighbor.
The 27-nation bloc will review the suspension of the travel ban, aimed at Lukashenko and 35 other senior officials, after the grace period.
The ministers warned that the travel ban could be restored if Belarus fails to make "further positive developments in the sphere of democracy and human rights".
However, the EU will maintain its pressure on the regime of Lukashenko, termed "Europe's last dictator," by retaining other sanctions, including an arms embargo, for another year.
The EU has taken note of Minsk's cooperation with the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, the ministers said.
by RTT Staff Writer