Committee of Ministers Chairmanship – Luxembourg: May - November 2002 

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Joint statement by the Chairman of the Committee of Ministers and the Secretary General of the Council of Europe on Belarus' relations with the international Community

Strasbourg/Luxembourg - 07.06.2002 - It is with deep concern that Lydie Polfer, Vice-Prime Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Luxembourg, Chairman of the Committee of Ministers and Walter Schwimmer, Secretary General of the Council of Europe have learned about the Belarusian authorities' decision not to grant a visa extension to Andrew Carpenter, acting head of the OSCE Assistance and Monitoring Group in Minsk. This decision amounts to rejecting the Group's as well as the entire OSCE's efforts to overcome the existing difficulties and is in contradiction with the declared willingness by the Belarusian authorities to improve their relations with the international community.

Recalling the solidarity and convergence among institutions and organisations acting in support of peace, democracy, human rights and the rule of law in Europe, Minister Polfer and Secretary General Schwimmer urge the authorities in Minsk to resume dialogue with the OSCE and with the Portuguese Chairmanship with a view to re-establishing cooperative links with the international community. The Council of Europe will follow future developments with utmost attention and assess their scope in order to determine its own approach.

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