Migration crisis on Belarus-Poland border is escalating

The migration crisis on the borders of Belarus with Poland, Lithuania, and Latvia ​has been developing​ since May 2021: migrants from the Middle East and North and West Africa are trying to enter the European Union illegally.

On 8-9 November 2021, an organized group of 1,000 migrants allegedly controlled by Belarusian security services attacked the Polish border. A government representative in Warsaw reported that there were about 4,000 migrants on the border between Belarus and Poland, and about 10,000 migrants in Belarus were ready to cross the Polish border. The Polish side does not allow them to enter the EU territory, specifying that there are no grounds for entry and stating that they are an instrument of hybrid attacks on the part of the Lukashenko regime. Besides, Poland has built barbed-wire fences along the border, reinforced its border troops, and declared a state of emergency in the border region.

The European Union accuses the Lukashenko regime of deliberately instigating the migration crisis and organizing a large-scale transfer of illegal immigrants to the EU borders in response to the sanctions imposed by the EU against Minsk for political repressions and brutal suppression of peaceful protests in Belarus after the 2020 presidential elections. The European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen called on the European Union member states to expand sanctions against the Belarusian authorities.

As of now, about 800–1,000 migrants from Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan, and Congo arrive in Belarus daily. According to the Dublin Regulation, migrants must apply for asylum in the country where they first crossed the EU border. But migrants prefer not to be registered in Poland and not leave their fingerprints in the EU fingerprint database since they want to get to Germany or France. These countries provide migrants with considerable financial help and better conditions in comparison with the other EU members. Over 8,000 migrants have already reached Germany through Belarus.

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