Poland to build fence, double troop numbers on Belarus border


Польские власти констатируют, что количество мигрантов, пытающихся пересечь границу их страны, растёт. В связи с этим министр обороны Мариуш Блащак сказал, что в скором времени он удвоит количество солдат на границе с Беларусью до 2000. Белорусский президент Лукашенко обвиняется в том, что он пропускает мигрантов через границу нелегально. EURACTIV разбирает реакцию Польши на миграционный кризис

Poland will build a fence along its border with Belarus and double the number of troops there, the defence minister said on Monday (23 August), to halt a flow of migrants the European Union says is being driven by Minsk in retaliation for EU sanctions.

Poland and fellow EU states Lithuania and Latvia have reported sharp increases in migrants from countries such as Iraq and Afghanistan trying to cross their borders. The EU says Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko is waging “hybrid warfare” with migrants to exert pressure on the bloc.

Polish Defence Minister Mariusz Błaszczak said that a new 2.5-metre-high solid fence would be built on the border with Belarus.

At a press conference at the border, Błaszczak also said the military presence there would be increased.

“It is necessary to increase the number of soldiers. … We will soon double the number of soldiers to 2,000,” he said.

Poland’s government has come under sharp criticism from human rights advocates over the plight of a group of migrants trapped for two weeks in the open between Polish and Belarusian border guards near the village of Usnarz Górny.

Poland says allowing the migrants to enter Polish territory would encourage further illegal migration and would also play into Lukashenko’s hands.

“These are not refugees, they are economic migrants brought in by the Belarusian government,” Deputy Foreign Minister Marcin Przydacz told reporters.

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