On the night of November 2, the Polish military noticed three unindentified persons carrying long guns and wearing uniforms on the Polish side of the EU-Belarus border, Stanisław Żaryn, spokesperson for the Polish special services, said on Twitter on Wednesday. He called the situation ‘another provocation’.
According to the press officer, when the Polish patrol tried to ‘contact’ the unknown people (i.e. started speaking to them), the latter reloaded their arms and returned to the Belarusian side.
On Tuesday, Alyaksandr Chasnouski, Chargé d’Affaires of the Republic of Belarus, was summoned to the Poland’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs on 2 November 2021. He was received by MFA’s Secretary of State, Professor Piotr Wawrzyk. The two officials discussed the above mentioned incident.
“Deputy Foreign Minister Piotr Wawrzyk forwarded an emphatic protest to the Belarusian side against the violation of Polish state border, emphasising that the actions taken by the Belarusian authorities in recent weeks have the increasingly evident hallmarks of a deliberate escalation. The deputy head of Polish diplomacy pointed out that Poland deems such actions unacceptable and will not tolerate them. He highlighted that Poland is determined to defend its borders and the external borders of the European Union. He also communicated that Poland and the Euro-Atlantic community of democratic states will consistently stand opposed to illegal migration orchestrated by Minsk,” the press service of the Polish MFA said in today’s statement.
The deputy foreign minister announced a note of protest to the MFA of Belarus and urged the Belarusian side to explain the incident immediately.
In May this year, Alyaksandr Lukashenka said he would no longer hold back the flow of refugees from the East heading to EU countries. After this statement, the number of migrants trying to enter the EU from the territory of Belarus increased sharply. First, dozens and then hundreds of migrants were stopped daily by Lithuanian border guards. Then refugees headed for Latvia and Poland. Within a few months of the migration crisis, nine people died. Poland and Lithuania are building barbed wire fences on the border with Belarus.
The Polish side repeatedly reported that the Belarusian military had been aiming at the Polish border guards. They also found ‘objects imitating bombs’ at the Polish-Belarusian border. On October 8, a patrol of Polish servicemen was fired at from the Belarusian side of the border; blanks were probably used.
In October alone, the Polish Border Service recorded almost 17.3 thousand attempts to illegally cross the Belarusian-Polish border. In September, there were about 7.5 thousand of such attempts, and more than 3.5 thousand in August.