A large group of migrants who were near the border between Poland and Belarus have been transferred by bus to a warehouse on Belarusian territory. According to Belarusians, it‘s about a thousand migrants.
According to Belarus, the warehouse is about 500 metres from the border and is heated. According to Belarus, they get food, water, medical help and a place to sleep. Images from international news agencies show that the building is normally used for the storage of goods. Now there are people in the middle of the positions.
It is unclear what will happen to the migrants now. Some say they go home, others fear Belarus won’t let them go:
Not all migrants have chosen to leave the border. Some want to stay and still hope that they can go to the European Union. It‘s about Iraqis, among other things. The Iraqi government has called on its citizens to return because they would not be welcome in the EU. Return flights are arranged, and it is expected to leave the Belarusian capital Minsk the first morning. It is unclear if and how many people will go with it.
Merkel calls Lukashenko
German Chancellor Merkel had another telephone contact with Belarusian President Lukashenko today. According to her spokesman, she stressed the need, together with the UN, to provide humanitarian aid to the people in the border area. Aid organizations believe that around ten people have died in the area in recent times, due to the cold and drowning, among others.
The statement also noticed that there was no mention of “President Lukashenko” but “Mr. Lukashenko”. Many Western countries no longer recognize him, after the fraudulently sell presidential elections last August.
Poland was critical of Merkel last week, due to a phone call she had with the Belarusian dictator on Monday. According to the Polish government spokesman, the conversation was “not a good move” and the country will not accept agreements made without the participation of the Poles.
Poland and the EU accuse Belarusian President Lukashenko of trying to destabilise the EU by sending many migrants in retaliation for Western sanctions against his regime. They speak of a “hybrid war.” Lukashenko previously said that he will no longer stop people on their way to a better life “in the pleasant West”.
Thousands of migrants in Belarus are still near the Polish border. In this video you’ll see where they are and under what circumstances: