As people camp out on the border between Belarus and Poland in freezing conditions, Brussels is squaring up to Minsk and brandishing a new tool it hopes will help turn the crisis around: fresh sanctions.
EU foreign affairs ministers met in Brussels on Monday to give their backing to new criteria for sanctions, giving the bloc legal power to target individuals and entities it holds responsible for trafficking migrants toward its borders in what it has labeled a “hybrid attack.”
EU High Representative Josep Borrell said they would affect an “important number” of people, while German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas went further: “Everyone who participates in the human trafficking that Lukashenko is conducting will be sanctioned by the EU,” Maas told reporters after the meeting.
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