Belarus to Freeze Accounts of George Bush, Condoleezza Rice


Belarus is ready to freeze the accounts of U.S. President George W. Bush and Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice. Such is the Minsk response to an earlier decision of the U.S. to freeze the American accounts of President Alexander Lukashenko.

"We'll apply appropriately symmetrical measures to George W. Bush and Condoleezza Rice. We'll freeze their accounts and seize their assets," Belarussian Security Council Secretary Viktor Sheiman was quoted by Interfax as saying in an interview with the National State Television and Radio Company.

"It's clear to everyone that neither Lukashenko, nor I have or can have any bank accounts in the U.S. The U.S. administration has been looking for these accounts for ten years now. And the Belarusian president said ten years ago that he would give this money to anyone who finds it - if he ever does," Sheiman said.

Sheiman described the U.S. stance as "diehard and ugly."

The White House's position, said Sheiman, is rooted in Belarus's determination to build a union state with Russia, its funding of a powerful military-political structure in the framework of the Collective Security Treaty Organization, and the Belarusian president's independent policy.

The U.S. extended sanctions on Belarusian President following an election many Western governments say was rigged. All of Lukashenko's assets in the United States have been frozen and Americans are now forbidden from doing business with him. The sanctions, which are part of a response coordinated with the EU, also apply to nine other Belarus officials.