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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

U.S. Ambassador Returns to Minsk

MINSK, Belarus -- The U.S. ambassador has returned to Belarus after its authoritarian government promised to pay the United States for losses incurred when the diplomat was evicted from his home, U.S. officials said Tuesday.

The Belarussian government forced out Western diplomats from the Drozdy residential compound last spring, claiming it needed urgent sewer repairs. The compound adjoins the residence of President Alexander Lukashenko, who later said it was actually part of his property.

Most European ambassadors returned to Minsk in January, agreeing to find new homes to replace the ones in Drozdy. But Daniel Speckhard, the newly arrived ambassador, has only paid brief visits to the former Soviet republic since the eviction.

Speckhard has moved into a new home in Rayubichi, just outside Minsk.