WASHINGTON: The United States has held off on joining Britain and Canada in imposing sanctions on Belarus in hopes the European Union can overcome an internal dispute, paving the way to coordinated U.S. and EU sanctions, four sources said on Wednesday.
The EU had vowed in August to impose sanctions on Belarus for alleged fraud in its Aug. 9 election and for human rights abuses since, but Cyprus, one of its smallest members, has prevented this.
Cyprus has maintained it will not agree to the Belarusian sanctions unless the EU also puts sanctions on Turkey because of a separate dispute over Turkish drilling for oil and gas in the Eastern Mediterranean.
Six sources told Reuters last week that Britain, Canada and the United States planned to impose sanctions on individual Belarusians in a coordinated move. Only London and Ottawa followed suit on Tuesday.
Speaking on condition of anonymity,…