Polish border forces attacked with stones in a tense migration and political border crisis
Polish forces at the border with Belarus used water cannons and tear gas on Tuesday against stone-throwing migrants. Meanwhile, Warsaw accused Belarusian authorities of giving smoke grenades and other weapons to those trying to cross the frontier.
The events marked an escalation in the tense crisis on the European Union’s eastern border, where the West has accused Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko of using the migrants as pawns to destabilize the 27-nation bloc in retaliation for its sanctions on his authoritarian regime. Belarus denies orchestrating the crisis.
Polish police are using water cannons, tear gas, and stun grenades against desperate refugees at the Poland-Belarus border.
The UN has described the conditions for refugees as "catastrophic" as they face hypothermia and starvation. pic.twitter.com/EIKDnbBRpZ
— Chad Loder (they/them) (@chadloder) November 16, 2021
Polish authorities said nine of its forces were injured: seven policemen, one soldier and a female border guard.
About 2,000 migrants were at the frontier in makeshift camps in the freezing weather. Only around 100 were believed to be involved in attacking the Polish forces at the crossing near Kuźnica, said Border Guard spokesperson Anna Michalska. The crossing has been closed since last week.
Belarus’s State Border Guard Committee and the Belarusian Foreign Ministry said they would investigate Poland’s actions.
Published by HOLR Magazine