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Poland Calls on NATO to ‘Take Concrete Steps’ Over Migrant Crisis on Border with Belarus

Belarus-Poland migrants

Amid the aggravated situation on the Poland–Belarus border, Warsaw is discussing the possibility of initiating Article 4 of the NATO Treaty with Latvia and Lithuania, Prime Minister of Poland Mateusz Morawiecki said in an interview with the state news agency PAP. He also called on the North Atlantic Alliance to take “concrete steps” to resolve the migrant crisis.

“It is not enough just for us to publicly express our concern. Now, we need concrete steps and the commitment of the entire Alliance,” Morawiecki said.

EU foreign ministers are expected to decide on another package of sanctions against Belarus on 15 November.

Morawiecki noted that the new restrictions could include the complete closure of the border with Belarus. He added that the EU “should make a joint contribution” to the Polish project of building a wall along the Poland–Belarus border.

EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell said sanctions would be imposed on “all those involved in migrant trafficking” in Belarus, including airlines, travel agencies, and officials.

At the same time, Ukraine is also getting ready for the possible development of the migrant crisis and the implementation of new scenarios by Belarus. In particular, according to Minister of Internal Affairs of Ukraine Denys Monastyrsky, a state of emergency may be imposed in Ukrainian regions bordering Belarus in case of aggravation.

The day before, a meeting of the National Security and Defence Council of Ukraine (NSDC) was held in Lutsk over the situation on the Poland–Belarus border. NSDC Secretary Oleksiy Danilov informed, referring to intelligence data, that “about 16,000 people – so-called refugees” stayed in Belarus. He noted that the current situation on the Poland–Belarus border could not be called a humanitarian crisis as it was “yet another special operation of the Russian Federation, which is being conducted to shatter the situation in Europe.”

Background

Article 4 of the NATO Treaty allows Allies to bring any issue of concern, especially related to security, to the table for discussion within the North Atlantic Council. At these consultations, Member States can exchange information or take a joint decision.

Bohdan Marusyak

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