Lithuania may completely stop the transit of Belarusian potash fertilizers, Foreign Minister Gabrielius Landsbergis told journalists in the wake of Wednesday’s meeting of the Cabinet. The EU member country has already addressed Brussels with a proposal to expand sanctions against Belarus, Delfi reports.
According to the top official, the sectoral sanctions that were imposed on the Lukashenka regime in June have affected only about 20% of transit. At the present time, the restrictions do not apply to all potash cargoes from Belarus, and Lithuania suggests the bloc should bring to nought Belarus’ supplying potash fertilizers via the port of Klaipeda.
“It’s possible to stop completely. I would say, yes, it’s realistic. Real negotiations have not started yet, therefore, it’s too soon to speak about that,” Delfi quotes Landsbergis.
It is not ruled out that the new sanctions will be introduced in September.
The total number of migrants illegally crossing the Belarusian-Lithuanian border in 2021 has exceeded 4,000, which is tens of times more than in the whole year of 2020. As reported earlier, in response to Western sanctions imposed on the regime, Alyaksandr Lukashenka threatened to loosen control over the flow of migrants and banned substances (even nuclear materials) at the border with the European Union.
Lithuania accuses the Belarusian border guards of ignoring the trespassers and even assisting them in their illegal moving, calling the current situation ‘the hybrid aggression’. The European Union sent employees of the EU Agency for External Border Security (Frontex) to Lithuania in order to strengthen the protection of the the EU-Belarus border from illegal migrants. In July, representatives of the foreign affairs committees of the United States, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Latvia, Lithuania, Germany, Poland, Ukraine, France, the Czech Republic, Estonia called for new sanctions against Lukashenka regime over fostering illegal migration.