President Joe Biden on Monday said the United States is levying new sanctions against Belarus, marking the one-year anniversary of Alexander Lukashenko’s election, which the U.S. and international community have said was fraught with irregularities
In announcing the sanctions, the White House also noted the forced landing of a European airliner traveling through the country’s airspace in order to arrest a prominent opposition journalist aboard.
Among those the Treasury Department cite in the new sanctions are Belaruskali OAO, which is one of Belarus’s largest state-owned enterprises and a source of wealth for the regime; the Belarusian National Olympic Committee; and 15 private companies, including the prominent Belarusian bank Absolutbank, that have ties with the Lukashenko regime.
The Belarus Olympic committee has been accused of facilitating money laundering, sanctions evasion and the circumvention of visa bans. The International Olympic Committee has also reprimanded it for its failure to protect Belarusian athletes from political discrimination and repression.