Updated at 18:07,08-09-2017

German government's representative arrives in Minsk

By Dzmitry Ulasaw, BelaPAN

Gernot Erler, the German federal government's coordinator for intersocietal cooperation with Russia, Central Asia and the Eastern Partnership countries, arrived in Belarus on Wednesday on a four-day visit.

The official is scheduled to meet with government officials and civil society representatives during his visit.

Mr. Erler welcomed the August 22 release of six opposition figures from Belarusian prisons as a "positive signal" for Belarusian-EU relations, according to the German foreign ministry's press office. "We would like to intensify our dialogue," he was quoted as saying. "At the same time, it is the conduct of a free and fair presidential election in October that still matters most. We hope that the OSCE will be able to observe the election without impediment and note progress on the observance of OSCE standards."

Mr. Erler visited Belarus this past May to attend the celebration of the 70th anniversary of the defeat of Nazi Germany.