Migration crisis: 33 people force PL-BY border, Belarusian services insult Poles

“On January 18, 33 people tried to cross the Polish-Belarusian border illegally. At night, on the section of the Polish Border Guard in Mielnik, a group of 32 people forced the border. Foreigners and Belarusian services tore down the fence and threw stones at Polish patrols. People have been detained, including Egyptian, Eritrean, Turkish and Yemen nationals,” the Border Guard wrote on Twitter.

Moreover, “Belarusian services shouted insults that were offensive towards Poland and Poles,” Border Guard spokeswoman, Lieutenant Anna Michalska said.

So far in January, there have already been over 500 attempts to illegally cross the border from Belarus to Poland.

“In the vicinity of Mielnik, 32 foreigners forcibly crossed the border. In the vicinity of Bobrowniki, four people swam across the Świsłocz River,” the spokeswoman stated. She added that the migrants did not need medical attention and they were given warm clothes and food. Lt Anna Michalska noted that it is not clear whether these migrants want to stay in Poland.

Migration crisis on the Polish-Belarusian border

Last year, the Border Guard recorded 39,700 attempts to illegally cross the Polish-Belarusian border. In December, there were over 1,700 attempts, 8,900 in November, 17,500 in October, 7,700 in September, and 3,500 in August.

A ban on stay in the strip encompassing 183 localities in the Podlaskie and Lubelskie provinces in the border zone with Belarus was introduced for three months, from December 1 to March 1. The inhabitants and emergency services are excluded from this ban. Previously, a state of emergency was in force in the same area.

By mid-2022, a barrier equipped with motion sensors as well as day and night cameras is to be erected on the 180-kilometre section of the border.