Lithuanian railways halts transport of Belarus potash – by Andrius Sytas (Reuters – January 31, 2022)

VILNIUS, Jan 31 (Reuters) – The board of state-owned Lithuanian Railways on Monday voted to stop transporting potash produced by Belarus state-owned potash producer Belaruskali unless it gets government approval to resume, the rail company said in a statement.

Belaruskali, the world’s second-largest producer of the crop fertiliser which is a big cash earner for Belarus, was sanctioned by the United States last August, a year after a crackdown following a disputed presidential election which President Alexander Lukashenko said he won.

The ban on potash sales took effect on Dec. 8 after a four-month wind-down period, but the transport of Belarus potash has continued via Lithuania. This caused a public outcry in Lithuania, a U.S. ally and one of Europe’s most vocal critics of human rights abuses in Belarus.

Earlier this month, Lithuania terminated the transport agreement between its railway company and Belaruskali, saying it went against national security.

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