| 22 February 2024, Thursday |

UK freezes assets of Belarusian defence chiefs for supporting Russia invading Ukraine

The United Kingdom issued penalties against four top defense officials in Alexander Lukashenko’s Belarus dictatorship on Tuesday for backing Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Victor Gulevich, Belarus’ chief of general staff and first deputy minister of defense, has been subjected to an asset freeze and travel ban.

According to the foreign ministry, he was “responsible for directing the activities of the Belarusian armed forces, which have supported and allowed the Russian invasion of Ukraine.”

“He has commanded joint military drills with Russia and approved to the deployment of Russian troops along the Belarus-Ukraine border, which has directly contributed to Russia’s ability to strike Ukraine, including from sites in Belarus,” the statement continued.

Major General Andrei Burdyko, deputy minister of defence for logistics and chief of logistics of the Belarusian armed forces, Major General Sergei Simonenko, deputy minister of defence and chief of armament, and Major General Andrey Zhuk, deputy minister of defence, have all been sanctioned.

JSC 558 Aircraft Repair Plant and JSC Integral, a military semi-conductor firm that also services and maintains military aircraft from a base used by Russian planes, were also sanctioned by London.

Lukashenko’s administration in Minsk, according to Foreign Secretary Liz Truss, “actively assists and abets Russia’s illegal invasion and will be made to suffer the economic consequences for its backing for Putin.”

“There will be nowhere to hide,” she added. Nothing is off the table, and no one is off the hook.

  • AFP