European Commissioner for the Internal Market Thierry Breton on Wednesday announced that the bloc will reinforce sanctions against Belarus.
European Council President Charles Michel and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen are holding a virtual press conference following a video conference with EU leaders on Wednesday to discuss the situation in Belarus in the wake of protests following the country’s disputed presidential election.
Belarus became engulfed in protests after the 9 August election results showed the incumbent president, Alexander Lukashenko, winning 80 percent of the vote, being re-elected for the sixth time.
During the first days, the rallies were put down by law enforcement officers: tear gas, water cannons, stun grenades, and rubber bullets were used against the demonstrators who did not accept the election results.
Then law enforcement agencies stopped dispersing the rallies and using force. In line with official data, over 6,700 people were detained in the first days. According to the Interior Ministry, hundreds of people were injured during the riots.
According to the Belarusian Health Ministry, two protesters died.