A view of an information board regarding the state of emergency near the border with Belarus in Zubrzyca Wielka, northeastern Poland, 03 September 2021. EPA-EFE/Artur Reszko
One of them was an Iraqi man, found on Sunday by Polish border guards near the village of Dworczysko, together with two others, all suffering from hypothermia. The two still alive are recovering in hospital.
However, it comes in the context of an already tense situation on Belarus' borders with Poland and the Baltics, after weeks during which Aleksandr Lukashenko's regime has been pushing migrants, primarily from the Middle East and Afghanistan, into the EU, partly in retaliation for sanctions Brussels imposed on it for a rigged presidential election in 2020 and a subsequent violent crackdown on de
Lithuanian border guards stopped more than 2,000 illegal Asian and African migrants coming from Belarus over the month of tough measures in force in the Baltic nation to prevent breaches of its territory,
"Over the past month since the government decided on an enhanced border protection policy, over 2,000 illegal migrants have been pushed back to Belarus," the statement says.
A member of the Polish Border Guard is seen exiting his vehicle near the border with Belarus on 14 August, 2021 in Zubrzyca Wielka, Poland. Photo: Jaap Arriens
According to the statement dated August 18, the Interior Ministry said 2,100 people had "attempted to illegally enter Poland" via the border with Belarus so far this month.
With Poland, which already hosts a growing number of Belarusian exiles, immediately offering the 24-year-old sprinter a humanitarian visa, Timanovskaya took refuge in the Polish embassy in Tokyo until a flight to Warsaw could be arranged. Contrary to expectations, she didn't fly directly to Warsaw, but took a detour to the Austrian capital Vienna instead.