ua en ru

US and Canada imposed new sanctions against Belarus

US and Canada imposed new sanctions against Belarus The US Department of the Treasury has imposed new sanctions against Belarus (photo:

On Monday, April 15, the US and Canada imposed sanctions against the Republic of Belarus. Restrictions have been imposed on several individuals and entities involved in supporting the regime of Belarusian dictator Alexander Lukashenko, according to the US Department of the Treasury.

The Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) of the US Department of the Treasury has designated 12 entities and 10 individuals. Among them are Belarusian state-owned enterprises, a Chinese company assisting the regime in Minsk in purchasing equipment from the US, and five of its employees.

Additionally, OFAC has decided to impose sanctions on five entities and five individuals involved in a global arms trading network and conducting business with a designated Belarusian defense company in the US.

The decision is the result of coordinated actions with the US Department of Justice and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Companies affected by the sanctions

State-Owned Enterprise Stanokhomel is a machine tool-building SOE based in Gomel, Belarus that regularly collaborates across various Belarusian and Russian industries. In 2023, Stankogomel signed contracts with U.S.-designated Russian defense firms Kalashnikov Concern and Almaz-Antey to provide material support to their operations.

OFAC has designated Stanokhomel as a company owned or controlled by the government of Belarus, under Executive Order 14038 of August 9, 2021 (Blocking Property of Certain Persons and Entities that Threaten the Peace, Security, or Stability of Belarus. - ed.).

OJSC AGAT-Control Systems-Managing is the managing company of the Company of Geoinformation Control Systems Holding (AGAT) holding, a state enterprise that sells management systems to the Armed Forces of Belarus, industrial computers, navigation systems, and video surveillance.

It is one of the largest enterprises of the State Authority for Military Industry of the Republic of Belarus (SAMI) - designated by OFAC on February 24, 2022, under E.O. 14038 for being a political subdivision, agency, or instrumentality of the GoB - and had an operating revenue of $40 million in 2022.

AGAT is licensed to conduct foreign trade activities about special goods, holding patents in Belarus, the Russian Federation, and the Eurasian Patent Organization. AGAT is listed on the US Department of Commerce Bureau of Industry and Security’s Entity List and was designated by Canada for a grave breach of international peace and security.

The press release notes that AGAT is the management company for four additional entities located in Belarus that OFAC is also designating: JSC NIIEVM, JSC Communication Equipment, JSC AGAT-System, and LLC InnoTech Solutions.

JSC NIIEVM is a developer and producer of dual-use computer equipment and specializes in the modernization and repair of weapons systems and military and special equipment. In cooperation with SAMI and partner enterprises in Russia, JSC NIIEVM is involved in air defense radio-technical facilities, air defense missile systems, mobile systems of electromagnetic warfare, reconnaissance control, and radio jamming systems.

JSC Communication Equipment specializes in the production of modern radio communication and telecommunication equipment, including products for uniformed services, and HF and VHF transceivers for civil and military use.

JSC AGAT-System is a leading organization in the creation and development of specialized radio communication and wired communication tools in the Belarusian market. JSC AGAT-System is included in the List of Enterprises of the Bureau of Industry and Security of the US Department of Commerce, and it was also added to the list by Canada for serious violations of international trade rules.

LLC InnoTech Solutions is a software development company with a special permit from the GoB for technical and/or cryptographic information protection and design, creation, and audit of information security systems of critical informatization objects. LLC InnoTech Solutions’ operating revenue was $6.51 million in 2022.

OFAC is adding all four of these enterprises to the list of persons who are owned or controlled by, or acting or purported to act for or on behalf of, directly or indirectly, the company AGAT, whose property and interests are blocked under Executive Order 14038.

Canada's sanctions against Belarus

Additionally, on April 15, Canada also imposed new sanctions against Belarus.

Canada's Ministry of Foreign Affairs separately announced sanctions against 21 individuals in response to the systematic abuses of the Lukashenko regime and further persecution of Belarusians protesting against the results of the 2020 presidential election.

The restrictions target current and former high-ranking officials, including security forces, prosecutors, representatives of the judiciary, and the administration of correctional and educational colonies in Belarus, who were involved in suppressing the rights of Belarusians to peaceful protests.

Following the illegitimate presidential elections in August 2020, the Belarusian authorities began massive repression against journalists and activists. According to rough estimates, over 35,000 people have been arrested, and dozens of non-governmental organizations and independent media outlets have been closed.

Sanctions by other countries against Belarus

On February 26, 2024, the European Union extended sanctions against Belarus due to its role in the war against Ukraine. The restrictions will remain in effect until the end of February 2025.

In early February of this year, the Seimas of Lithuania approved a proposal to extend national sanctions against Russian and Belarusian citizens for another year, as well as to strengthen checks on Belarusians entering the country.

In addition, Taiwan has expanded export restrictions against Russia and Belarus.