According to the Lithuanian Foreign Ministry, withdrawal of heads of diplomatic missions openly demonstrates the reluctance of the Belarusian authorities to conduct a dialogue with the EU. Audronius Ažubalis says the envoys are "the most important figures for the dialogue to happen."
France, Germany, the Czech Republic and other EU member-states have officially declared about withdrawal of their ambassadors from Belarus.
Previously, the Belorussian Ministry of Foreign Affairs has recalled Belarus' permanent representative to the European Union and Ambassador of Belarus to Poland for consultations in Minsk in connection with the expansion of the EU sanctions. The Head of the EU Delegation in Belarus and Poland's ambassador were also invited to leave for their capitals for consultations.
In response, France, Germany, the Czech Republic and other EU member-states have officially declared about withdrawal of their ambassadors from Belarus.
On Wednesday, Ažubalis announced that all EU countries' ambassadors should be recalled from Minsk. "It was decided that they would all return for consultations this week," the minister told journalists, refusing to speculate as to when ambassadors would return to Minsk, saying that "it will depend on a further direction of EU-Belorussian relations."
Meanwhile, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Belarus calls Brussels' policy towards the country a "path of escalation," leading to deadlock. According to Foreign Ministry spokesman Andrei Savinykh, the nervous reaction of the EU to Belarus' proposals to hold a round of consultations by the ambassadors of the EU and Poland in their capitals indicates only one thing – Brussels’ choice to move towards escalation of tension.