Poland warned on Wednesday that the immigration crisis on its eastern border with Belarus would continue for months or even years, a day after its forces tried to cross the border using tear gas and water cannons. As the two countries continue to crisis without reaching a solution, Belarus has announced the establishment of logistics centers and makeshift camps to house asylum seekers and provide them with food and beverages. There are fears that these centers will become permanent camps.
In a complicated situation, German Chancellor Angela Merkel made two phone calls with Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko, whose regime did not recognize Berlin.
In the aftermath of yesterday’s clashes, Polish Defense Minister Mariusz Blaszczyk said in a recent escalation of months’ conflict on the EU’s eastern border that further attempts to cross the border took place overnight.
“We must be prepared that the situation on the Polish-Belarus border will not be resolved soon,” Blaszczak told Polish radio “Jedinka”. We have to be ready for months or even years.
He said efforts to cross the border were continuing and that immigrants were using the same method of crossing the Polish border as they did at the Brosje-Kosnica crossing on Tuesday. “Public attention was focused on what happened in Cosnica, while small immigrant groups tried to break through the Polish border into other sections, even at night,” he said.
Armed when needed
The Polish border guards announced that they would use weapons if necessary, and the Polish border guards spokeswoman Anna Mikelskaya said on Tuesday: “I assure you that the border guards will not hesitate to use weapons if necessary,” but at the same time, the Polish side will try to avoid this.
Westerners say thousands of migrants, mostly from the Middle East, have been stranded in hopes of entering the EU, and that this is a crisis planned by Belarus in an attempt to put pressure on the EU and respond to sanctions. But Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko has denied the allegations and criticized the EU for not accepting immigrants.
Yesterday, Lukashenko instructed the governor of the Grotno region on the border with Poland to open a “temporary” shelter to provide mattresses, clothing and food to those stranded on the border.
Official sources point out that the center is home to about 1,000 people, including women and children, and that small toilets with waste bins have been installed inside it in collaboration with the Red Cross.
Lukashenko made his second phone call over the weekend with German Chancellor Angela Merkel on the immigration crisis.
In a statement issued Wednesday, the Belarussian president said that Lukashenko and Merkel had discussed in detail the issue of immigrants seeking to enter the EU and had reached a definite understanding on how to continue to make progress in resolving pending issues.
According to the report, Lukashenko and Merkel agreed to raise the issue of immigration to a level between Belarus and the EU, and to appoint officials from both parties who will immediately begin negotiations to resolve the pending issues. In this case, the decision on whether the refugees want to go to Germany will be made, the statement said.
The report points out that the German president informed the Belarusian president during a call from European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen about the need for international organizations to participate in the process of asylum and migration. Active cooperation with the Belarusian side.
Lukashenko and Merkel agreed to establish new contacts in the future, according to the report.
The German side did not immediately comment on the new call between Merkel and Lukashenko.
Earlier in the day, German government spokesman Steffen Seibert confirmed that the first call between Merkel and Lukashenko had taken place in close coordination between Berlin and the European Commission.
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