NOW: Americans Told To Leave; Level 4 Risk


( – BREAKING NEWS NOW: The Biden administration just issued an urgent warning to U.S. citizens in Belarus, urging them to leave the country immediately and advising against travel to the country.

This heightened travel warning follows increased security measures taken by Lithuania, Latvia, and Poland – countries that share a border with Belarus – due to concerns about the presence of Russian Wagner mercenary forces in Belarus.

The State Department has called on Americans in Belarus to leave as soon as possible and has classified Belarus as a Level 4 risk, the highest security warning level.

Alexander Lukashenko, the longstanding leader of Belarus, often called Europe’s last dictator, has played a significant role in supporting Russian President Vladimir Putin’s war efforts in Ukraine. Lukashenko is under multiple U.S. sanctions for human rights violations and political repression against Belarusian citizens who questioned his election victory in 2020.

The U.S. mission in Belarus operates at a reduced capacity, primarily providing emergency assistance to American citizens.

Lukashenko’s decision to host Wagner forces in an agreement with Putin, which concluded the mercenary group’s brief rebellion against the Kremlin, has caused alarm among NATO member countries that share a border with Belarus.

The State Department’s warning stated, “Do not travel to Belarus due to Belarusian authorities’ continued facilitation of Russia’s unprovoked attack on Ukraine, the buildup of Russian military forces in Belarus, the arbitrary enforcement of local laws, the potential of civil unrest, the risk of detention, and the Embassy’s limited ability to assist U.S. citizens residing in or traveling to Belarus.”

Last week, Lithuania shut down two of its six border crossings with Belarus. The State Department is advising Americans to use the remaining open border crossings and has highlighted that the governments of Poland, Lithuania, and Latvia have indicated that more border closures with Belarus are possible.

Poland has kept one border crossing with Belarus open, and Latvia has two crossings available.

Both Poland and Latvia have bolstered their military presence at the borders with Belarus, and both countries accuse Lukashenko of exploiting migrants from the Middle East by transporting them to Belarus and then sending them across the border.