The European Union (EU) will “toughen sanctions” against Belarus, which is accused of orchestrating the influx of migrants across the Polish border to put pressure on Europe, German Foreign Minister Haiko Maas said today ahead of a meeting of foreign ministers. EU in Brussels.
President of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko has called for the lifting of all sanctions. “We will give our answer today: we will further toughen the sanctions,” Maas said as he approached the meeting.
He also spoke of “greater rigor” for the people involved in the smuggling of migrants, also saying that “serious financial sanctions are inevitable”.
“We will continue on this path of austerity because there is no reasonable alternative,” Maas added.
For his part, Lithuanian Foreign Minister Gabrielius Landsbergis today called for all Belarus airports to be ‘out of bounds’ for airlines that may carry potential migrants.
“We need to make Minsk airport a no-fly zone,” he told reporters.
The Danish counterpart of Jepe Kofod stated that his country is completely in favor of a new round of European sanctions against Belarus. “We hope that today we will be able to agree on a fifth package,” he told a meeting of EU foreign ministers.