HR Borrell: ‘Entry in EU is only possible through legitimate border crossings’

The people trapped in the Lukashenka regime’s deplorable scheme need to be provided the necessary assistance; they should not be dying frozen at the border, Josep Borrell, EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, stated on the back of Foreign Affairs Council and Eastern Partnership Ministerial on November 15.

At the same time, the European Union’s borders are not open in an unlimited way, he stressed.

“The entry in the European Union is only possible through legitimate border crossings, fulfilling the EU requirements – be it visas or asylum procedures. Any information claiming otherwise is wrong and it is pure disinformation,” the top official said.

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According to Borrell, EU delegations around the world, especially in the most affected countries, are providing information in order to avoid people being instrumentalised, in order to avoid people being weaponised, being cheated and being converted in a kind of instrument with political objectives.

“The responsibility of what is happening is on Belarus, one hundred percent. We can start solving this problem by stopping the flow of people to Belarus, and those who are already in Belarus must be given humanitarian assistance. Those who do not qualify to be considered refugees must be returned back to their countries of origin. We have seen that Iraqis authorities are organising emergency repatriation flights, for their citizens who want to return and we welcome this decision,” the statement reads.

On November 15, the Council of the EU amended its sanctions regime against the Belarusian authorities by broadening the listing criteria on which specific designations can be based. The EU is now able to target individuals and entities organising or contributing to activities by the Lukashenka regime that facilitate illegal crossing of the EU’s external borders.

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“We are looking at all possible solutions to stop the Lukashenka regime from targeting us and from targeting its own population, and we agreed to expand the scope of the sanctions regime on Belarus. From now on, we will be able to sanction more people according to their activities, on the organisation of these flights of people from several countries going to Belarus, and from there to the European Union’s member states borders,” Josep Borrell said.

In his view, the current crisis which was artificially created should not distract from the internal situation in Belarus with the ongoing large-scale violation of human rights. The dialogue may be re-established by the regime’s stopping the violations, not by importing people to EU borders, he added.

Last week, amid the ongoing migration crisis at the Belarusian-Polish border, the European Union was reported to be close to imposing more sanctions on Belarus, targeting some 30 individuals and entities including its foreign minister Uladzimir Makey and Belarus’ national air carrier Belavia. In the course of her recent meeting with US leader Joe Biden, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen announced that the EU wouldwiden sanctions against Belarus very rapidly at the beginning of next week’.

Belarusian law enforcers destroy border fence and give tear gas to migrants, Polish side claims, following