The European Union is convinced that Belarusian President Lukashenko is deliberately directing refugees to Europe in retaliation for the economic sanctions imposed on his country. But according to Lukashenko, gangs of people smugglers are responsible for the influx of migrants, who come from Iraq, Afghanistan and Yemen, among other countries.
Moreover, according to the Belarusian Minister of Foreign Affairs, about 2,000 immigrants have been returned to their countries of origin today. His statements were not to have the correct documentation.
Poland refuses to accept migrants from Belarus and says it has sent 15,000 soldiers to the border. Belarus calls this disproportionate and says it will respond firmly to any attacks.
Minsk got help from older brother Russia, which sent two bombers to the Belarusian border last week. The official statement said that the plane was there to help test the Belarusian defense system.
The economic power of Brussels
German Chancellor Merkel and Russian President Putin discussed the matter last week, but nothing concrete came of it.
However, the European Union uses its economic power by putting pressure on airlines, facilitating the flow of migrants. Turkey announced, today, that it will no longer sell tickets to Iraqis, Syrians and Yemenis wishing to travel to Belarus.
The European border agency Frontex warns that the EU must take into account that the influx of migrants will continue for the time being. Because of the crisis, Brussels wants to increase sanctions against the Belarusian regime. The intent is to get more clarity on this on Monday.
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