Lithuania and Poland took such a step on Monday in response to Belarus’ decision on October 2 to recall their ambassadors to both countries.
The Minsk decision, in turn, was taken in response to European Union (EU) sanctions against Belarusian officials accused of electoral fraud and human rights abuses. The Belarussian authorities also demanded that Lithuania and Poland reduce the staff of their diplomatic missions.
As reported, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Latvia Edgars Rinkēvičs said on Wednesday that the Ambassador of Latvia had also been recalled from Belarus for consultations.
Sources at the German Foreign Ministry said on Tuesday that the country’s ambassador to Minsk, Manfred Huterer, had temporarily left Belarus to lead discussions in Berlin and show solidarity with Poland and Lithuania.
“In Estonia’s assessment, Belarus’s pressure on Lithuania and Poland is unjustified and regrettable,” said Estonian Foreign Minister Urmas Reinsalu.
The recall of an ambassador is a political step, not a legal one, and means the temporary departure of an ambassador without losing his or her status as an ambassador, his or her right to return to the country and capital in which the ambassador is accredited.
Estonian Ambassador to Minsk Merike Kokajeva will arrive for consultations in Tallinn on Thursday.
Lithuania and Poland have angered Belarusian authoritarian President Alexander Lukashenko in support of protests following the August 9 presidential election, which called for Lukashenko’s resignation.