U.S. Ambassador To Belarus: Diplomacy With Lukashenka Rarely Leads To Progress
In an exclusive interview with RFE/RL’s Belarus Service, U.S. Ambassador Julie Fisher stressed that the United States continues to call for an "inclusive dialogue" inside Belarus that “leads to a new election” under the auspices of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) “after the unconditional release of all political prisoners.” Fisher was sworn in in December 2020 as the first U.S. envoy to Belarus since 2008, but because of the leadership dispute in Belarus, she has not taken up her post in Minsk. She said the vote count in the August 9, 2020, election in which Alyaksandr Lukashenka claimed to have won a landslide sixth presidential term remains unknown and called the democratic movement born out of that event “momentous.” She said Washington will continue to look for additional tools of pressure as they are the most effective way to make an impression on the regime in Minsk.