Can that be a uniform migration policy? While Poland is significantly increasing border security towards Belarus – with a high fence and electronic barriers – its border is virtually open to Ukrainians entering. On Saturday, 14 people from Belarus were prevented from entering the country. On the same day, almost 29,000 Ukrainians crossed the Polish border.
According to the border guard, Poland has so far secured 140 kilometers of its border with Belarus with a high fence. The authority announced on Sunday that the installation of an electronic barrier would begin in the coming days. A video posted on Twitter by the Border Patrol showed a high fence made of metal elements, with SUVs patrolling a wide strip of sand in front of it.
The Polish-Belarusian border is 418 kilometers long, of which 186 kilometers is overland, the rest through lakes and rivers. The situation there escalated in late summer and autumn last year: thousands of people tried to enter the EU illegally. At the time, the European Union accused Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko of bringing migrants from crisis regions to the EU’s external border in an organized manner in order to put pressure on the West. However, these allegations have not yet been proven.
With the warmer temperatures, the number of attempted illegal border crossings has recently increased again. According to the border guards, 14 people tried to get to Poland from Belarus on Saturday.
At the end of August 2021, soldiers had already erected a temporary fence on the land sections of the border. Since the end of January, this has been replaced by a 5.5 meter high fence equipped with motion detectors and cameras. A budget of the equivalent of 366 million euros has been earmarked for the project. Poland intends to complete work on the remaining sections by the end of June.
On July 1, restrictions that previously applied to a three-kilometer strip along the border are to be lifted. Interior Minister Mariusz Kamiński had declared the area a no-go zone, foreigners and helpers were not allowed in. With the completion of the border fence, there is no longer any need for the restrictions, the Ministry of the Interior recently announced.
million arrivals from Ukraine
Poland, on the other hand, reacts completely differently to people arriving from Ukraine. Since the beginning of the Russian military operation, the Polish border guard has registered four million arrivals from Ukraine. On June 11 alone, 24,900 people crossed the border into Poland, as the authorities announced on Twitter on Sunday. On that day, 28,000 people crossed the border from Poland to Ukraine in the opposite direction. According to the authorities, most of these were Ukrainian citizens.
There is no official information on how many of the war refugees stayed in Poland and how many traveled on to other EU countries. Poland’s Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki said recently that his country has taken in more than two million refugees from Ukraine.
more on the subject – The EU claims to be open to all refugees – it is even more open to those from Ukraine