Minsk frowns on OSCE decision on Belarus membership

Minsk disapproves of the decision of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe, whose session is over in Berlin, to put off until 2003 consideration of the membership of Belarus in the OSCE.

In a comment on this decision, press secretary of the Belarussian Foreign Ministry Pavel Latushko said that the position of Minsk is inviolable -- the National Assembly (Belarussian parliament) should be represented in the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly. The decision taken by the Berlin session "is a demonstration of the inability of the OSCE as an organisation to uphold own principles", said the spokesman of the Belarussian Foreign Ministry.

The OSCE Parliamentary Assembly motivates its decision by the alleged involvement of Belarussian top officials in the disappearance of opposition politicians and by Belarus allegedly supplying military equipment to terrorists and countries which are providing shelter for terrorists.

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