The EU embraces Poland’s ‘Marshall Plan’ for Belarus

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European Union leaders at a special summit in Brussels approved a Polish economic aid plan for Belarus that aims to support democratic changes in that country.

“I am pleased to say that the European Council, after a very long debate, approved the economic plan for a democratic Belarus that we championed,” Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki said, adding that “the plan is to support democratic changes, any changes that serve a free, sovereign Belarus.”

The Polish proposal, described as a “Marshall Plan for Belarus”, had been approved by the Visegrad Group of Poland, Hungary, the Czech Republic, and Slovakia. Poland had been lobbying for a firm response by the EU to the crisis in Belarus and Morawiecki was satisfied that in the end the EU agreed with Poland on the issue.

The plan for Belarus, which is now to be fleshed out by the European Commission, includes concrete measures to assist Belarusian companies, the creation of a €1 billion stabilization fund and visa-free travel for Belarusians to the Schengen zone.