LONDON – The United Kingdom has announced a first round of sanctions against Belarus for its support for the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
The government sanctioned Victor Gulevich, Belarusian chief of staff and first deputy defense minister, along with other deputy defense ministers, and two military companies – an aircraft repair plant and a manufacturer military semiconductors.
Gulevich is responsible for leading the actions of the Belarusian armed forces, including joint military exercises with Russia, and has consented to the deployment of Russian troops along the Belarusian border with Ukraine, according to the British Foreign Office, du Commonwealth and Development.
Others sanctioned are Andrei Burdyko, deputy defense minister for logistics and chief of logistics of the Belarusian armed forces; Sergei Simonenko, Deputy Defense Minister for Armaments and Armaments Chief of the Belarusian Armed Forces; and Andrey Zhuk, Deputy Defense Minister.
The move comes the same day Ukraine’s parliament claimed Belarusian troops were on Ukrainian soil, though the US said later in the day it had “no indication” that the claim was correct.
“The Lukashenko regime is actively aiding and abetting the illegal invasion of Russia and will be made to feel the economic consequences of its support for Putin,” British Foreign Secretary Liz Truss said.
The UK had previously said its aim was to extend its entire Russia sanctions package to Belarus.