Poland Wants to Strengthen Border Controls With Belarus

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Poland has decided to strengthen the controls at its 418-kilometre border with Belarus in an attempt to improve the countryโ€™s and the blocโ€™s security.

Announcing the news, the Prime Minister of Poland, Donald Tusk, said that the country needs to take additional measures as there have been warnings of Russia threatening the security of the eastern European countries, SchengenVisaInfo.com reports.

Following such a statement,ย  Estoniaโ€™s ambassador to Poland, Miko Haljas, warned that the danger should not be underestimated.

Speaking for Euronews, ambassador Haljas said that it is very important that the country takes measures as Russia, which is Belarusโ€™ most important partner, might reorganise the capabilities of its military in the next four years.

Taking this into account, ambassador Haljas highlighted that support for Ukraine and strengthened rules are significant for Poland and the other neighbouring countries.

Agnieszka Legucka, who is an expert on Russia from the Polish Institute of International Affairs, also noted that there are risks. She said for Euronews that Russia is spreading disinformation with the aim of pushing Russians and Belarusians to believe that the two countries need a bigger army to protect their borders.

Russia maintains that Poland has imperial ambitions, and Poland would like to occupy, for example, part of Ukraine or part of Belarus, which has somewhat convinced the public [Russian and Belarusian citizens] that Russia and Belarus need to have a bigger army.

Agnieszka Legucka, an Expert on Russia From the Polish Institute of International Affairs

Taking into account the disinformation spread by Russia and the possible risks that might occur, Tusk said that Poland is ready to cooperate with other countries to step up their defences and introduce stricter rules at the borders.

While the Polish authorities are yet to officially reveal the measures that the country will take at its border with Belarus, the Polish Foreign Affairs Deputy, Andrzej Szejna, said that the country wants to have a control system with rotating cameras.

According to Poland, Belarus has been helping migrants to the Polish border and using them to destabilise the bloc. For this reason, the country already applies restrictions at its border with Belarus.

The Polish authorities just recently revealed that the border police have facilitated more than 6,000 returns between July 2023 and January 2024 at the border with Belarus.

Poland implemented the practice of pushbacks back in 2021 as a response to the high number of irregular migrants being instrumentalised and trying to cross the border.

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