Belarus recalls ambassador to Britain over 'hostile' UK policy

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FILE PHOTO: Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko attends a meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Sochi, Russia May 23, 2022.

LONDON (Reuters) - Belarus recalled its ambassador to Britain on Friday in response to what it called "hostile and unfriendly" actions by London.

In a statement, Belarus' foreign ministry said Britain had adopted policies that were "systematically aimed at causing maximum damage to Belarusian citizens and legal entities," citing sanctions on its companies, a ban on national airline Belavia and restrictions on Belarusian state media.

Ties between Belarus and the West have plunged since the country's leader, Alexander Lukashenko, cracked down hard on the opposition after a disputed 2020 presidential election. Belarus also allowed Russia to use its territory to launch a major prong of its Feb. 24 invasion of Ukraine.

Lukashenko and Minsk have become increasingly isolated in the West and moved closer to the Kremlin for crucial financial, military and diplomatic support.

Belarus' foreign ministry also attacked what it called the "political theatre" of Britain's domestic politics and called on politicians to "work not for their personal rating, but for the benefit of British people."

(Reporting by Reuters)

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