WASHINGTON (CN) – President Obama has extended orders freezing the economic activity of certain members of the government of Belarus involved in alleged electoral fraud and suppression of political dissidents in the run up to the 2006 presidential election in that country.
A similar freeze has been extended on the assets of anyone believed to be involved in blocking implementation of the Dayton Accords in Bosnia or engaging in extremist violence in Macedonia.
Executive Order 13405 was issued by former President George W. Bush in 2006 in protest of the actions of President Alexander Lukashenka and ten other members of his government who have been accused of intimidating, kidnapping and otherwise suppressing political parties opposed to Lukashenka’s third term in office, which he claimed to win by more than 80 percent of the vote. The order has been extended by one year each year since it was issued.
Former President George W. Bush also issued Executive Order 13219 in 2001 which froze the assets of anyone interfering with the implementation of the General Framework Agreement for Peace in Bosnia and Herzegovina including the late Slobodan Milocevic, the former president of Serbia and Yugoslavia, who died while on trial for crimes against humanity allegedly committed during the civil wars leading to the partition of Yugoslavia.
Milocevic’s son and several other relatives and dozens of other Serbian nationalists accused of crimes against humanity are still subject to the order. The order has been extended every year since it was issued, with some modifications, as several former provinces of Yugoslavia became independent countries and some suspected war criminals turned themselves in or have been cleared of the charges leading to their inclusion in the order.