Statement on Release of Political Prisoners in Belarus

As delivered by Ambassador Ian Kelly
to the Permanent Council, Vienna
April 19, 2012

The United States notes the release of former Belarusian presidential candidate, Andrei Sannikov, and his campaign manager, Zmitser Bandarenka. These releases, coupled with previous releases, represent a significant step.

We urge the Government of Belarus to free all remaining political prisoners immediately and unconditionally, and to ensure the full restoration of their civil and political rights, Respect for democracy and human rights remains central to improving relations between the United States and Belarus.

Thank you, Mr. Chairman.