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Belarus Accuses Lithuania of Spying 23 August 2012

The Belarus KGB recently announced the arrest of a Lithuanian spy ring allegedly operating out of the Lithuanian Embassy in Minsk.

Minsk Sign

Various reports state that Belarusian nationals were arrested, while others state that a Lithuanian Embassy official, identified only as Mr F, was detained.

Yet another source claims that a Belarusian ex-military official living in Vilnius was the central figure.

The Belarusian KGB claim that the spy ring was caught red-handed while exchanging information, and that electronic equipment and ‘spy gadgets’ were seized at the time of arrest.

The nature of the information is said to be military, and involving bilateral security arrangements between Belarus and Russia.

The Lithuanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs dismissed the Belarusian charges and said that they do not contribute to an improvement of bilateral relations between the two countries.

The Lithuanian diplomat is expected to be declared persona non grata by Belarus authorities, whereas the Belarusian members of the alleged ring face up to 15 years in prison, if convicted.

Minsk regularly accuses Vilnius of operating as a proxy of the United States and of offering clandestine support to the anti-Lukashenko opposition in Belarus.

The Belarus media also accused Lithuania of complicity in a so-called teddy-bear campaign recently, when over 1,000 teddy-bears were showered on the city of Ivyanets, near Minsk, from a small Swedish plane in protest of violations of free speech.

The plane is alleged to have entered Belarus via Lithuanian airspace.

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