Freedom House head: Makey deserves being in black books

The invitation of Belarusian Foreign Minister Uladzimir Makey to an Eastern Partnership summit to be held in Vilnius this November would be a sign of the failure of the Western policy regarding Belarus, David Kramer, executive director of Washington-based Freedom House, said during a conference in Tallinn, Estonia.

Mr. Makey is on the European Union’s blacklist and deserves to be there, said Mr. Kramer, who served as the US assistant secretary of state for democracy, human rights and labor in 2008 and 2009. He expressed concern about what he called to willingness of Europe to improve relations with Aliaksandr Lukashenka’s regime despite the fact that he had not met any of its conditions.

The release of Belarusian political prisoners, including Aliaksandr Kazulin, in 2008 was due to the Western sanctions, he noted. The sanctions currently in place are not efficient enough because of the growing trade between the EU and Belarus, he said. Mr. Kramer said that Barack Obama’s administration did not appear to pay enough attention to Belarus, and that Washington officials were tired of the Belarus issue.

The May 23-24 conference in Tallinn focuses on Belarus’ relations with the European Union and Russia. It brought together political analysts from a number of countries, including Belarus, Poland, Russia, and the United States.

Belsat, following BelaPAN

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