Polish diplomat expelled from Belarus - MFA

The Polish consul in the Belarusian city of Brest has been expelled, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said on Wednesday.

The expulsion of the diplomat from the border city could further exacerbate tensions between Poland and Belarus already taught owing to the migrant crisis and the persecution of pro-democracy supporters by the Belarusian government.

"We confirm the fact that our consul in Brest, Belarus has been expelled," the ministry's spokesperson Łukasz Jasina told PAP on Wednesday.

He added that a statement on the matter would be prepared after the Foreign Ministry clarified the situation.

"We are verifying the information and when we are fully clear, we will communicate more," Jasina said.

The Belarusian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, earlier on Wednesday, announced the expulsion of "an employee of the Polish consulate in Brest" from Belarus.

"We do not see the possibility of this consulate employee continuing his work in Belarus," said Anatoly Glaz, spokesperson for the Belarusian Foreign Ministry. "We will inform our foreign partners about this incident. We hope that our Polish colleagues will draw the appropriate conclusions," he added.

He also said that on Wednesday the Polish charge d'affaires had been summoned to the Foreign Ministry in connection with, as he described it, "an outrageous event".

Glaz said that a Polish citizen was suspected of causing an accident in which two Belarusian citizens had been killed, and therefore his right to leave Belarus was temporarily suspended. On January 3, however, he made an attempt to leave the country and flee to Poland, but was arrested.

According to Glaz, the attempt to escape was said to have been "initiated and organised by employees of the Polish consulate in Brest."