Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs written question – answered on 30th March 2006.

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Photo of William Hague William Hague Shadow Secretary of State (Foreign Affairs)

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what assistance the Government are providing to help build democratic civil society in Belarus; and if he will make a statement.

Photo of Jack Straw Jack Straw Foreign Secretary

The UK has provided £1.5 million since 2002 to assist civil society in Belarus. During our presidency of the EU, we outlined steps to be taken by the EU to increase contact with the Belarusian people and to strengthen support for civil society, including through technical assistance and by opening an EU office in Minsk. To this effect, the EU has transferred €2 million from its Technical Aid to the Commonwealth of Independent States programme to the more flexible European Initiative for Democracy and Human Rights programme.

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