Prevent IMF resources from being distributed to the dictatorship in Belarus!
With this letter, we appeal to you to prevent the undemocratic regime of Belarus former president Lukashenka from accessing approximately 1 billion USD of SDR to be allocated by the IMF in August 2021 (imf.org/en/News/Articles/2021/03/23/pr2177-imf-execdir-discuss-new-sdr-allocation-us-650b-boost-reserves-help-global-recovery-covid19). This appeal follows up on the amended Belarus Democracy, Human Rights, and Sovereignty Act (22 USC §5811 Note; uscode.house.gov/view.xhtml?req=(title:22%20section:5811%20edition:prelim), hereinafter referred to as “BDA”). Its Section 3 states that it is the policy of the US to refuse to recognize Lukashenka as the legitimately elected leader of Belarus and, in coordination with the EU and other international partners, to impose targeted sanctions against Belarus officials. The BDA also states that “The Secretary of the Treasury should instruct the US Executive Director at each international financial institution to use the voice and vote of the US to oppose any extension by those institutions of any financial assistance to the Government of Belarus.” Thus, the IMF must freeze Belarus’ share in the new SDR allocation until the power in Belarus is transferred to the new legitimate government, which would appear as a result of free, fair, and internationally recognized elections. In a very similar case in 2020, when Maduro’s government applied for a loan from the IMF, the Fund responded that its engagement was predicated on official recognition by its membership and there was no clarity on whether Maduro was recognized as the president. For the same reason, Maduro will not have access to Venezuela’s share of the forthcoming SDR allocation (bloomberg.com/news/articles/2021-04-16/venezuela-cut-off-from-share-of-imf-s-650-billion-new-reserves). It is precisely in the same rationale of lack of legitimacy that should drive the IMF to restrict access to SDR by Lukashenka’s regime. By now, the US and 40 other countries (including the entire EU, UK, and Canada) did not recognize the results of the 2020 election in Belarus. Together, these countries comprise more than 56% of the total IMF votes, including the unique veto power of the US, as opposed to under 13% who congratulated Lukashenka. This provides an opportunity for the US and the international community to raise their voice in support of free, democratic, and sovereign Belarus by preventing Lukashenka’s regime from accessing the IMF funds. Also, as there is no consensus on whether Lukashenka’s envoys can legitimately represent Belarus, the current envoys should no longer be recognized as the IMF Governors. It is exactly what the IMF did to Maduro’s representatives, and we appeal to the US to initiate applying the same principles to Lukashenka’s regime. For more details and facts, please refer to this document: tiny.one/BelarusIMF I urge you to ensure that the IMF resources are not used to prop up the existence of the dictatorship in the middle of Europe!
First sent on July 9 by Belarusian community in the US