EU adds four to Belarusian visa ban list

BRUSSELS, Oct. 23 (Xinhua) -- The European Union (EU) on Monday added four names to its visa ban and asset freeze list of high-ranking Belarusian officials, bringing the total number of sanctioned personnel from 31 to 35.

The four are district court judges Rybakov Alexei and Yasinovich Leonid Stanislavovich, and public prosecutors Bortnik Sergei Aleksandrovich and Migun Andrei Arkadevich.

EU environment ministers, meeting in Luxembourg Monday, voted to endorse the extended measures "in the light of recent developments in Belarus," the European Union Council said in a statement.

The four were "considered responsible for the crackdown on civil society and democratic opposition," the statement said.

In April, the EU banned 31 Belarusian officials from entry into the EU for what it considered a flawed presidential election in the country in March.

The EU also decided in May to freeze the accounts of Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko.

The Monday vote followed a EU decision two weeks ago to put on ice plans to slap mini-trade sanctions on Minsk due to violation of international trade union codes.

Editor: Yan Liang