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Migration crisis: 22 people force PL-BY border, Polish soldier dead in fatal accident

During the last 24 hours, a total of 22 people tried to illegally cross the Polish-Belarusian border, the Border Guard informed on Thursday. There was also an unfortunate accident near Białowieża, which resulted in the death of a Polish soldier.

Deceased soldier

“On January 26 (Wednesday), an unfortunate incident took place near Białowieża, as a result of which a soldier of the 9th Armoured Cavalry Brigade was killed,” the 16th Mechanised Division wrote on Twitter.

“According to preliminary findings, the service weapon fired, which resulted in the death of the soldier,” the division’s account stated.

It was added that the incident took place before the soldier started his watch. The soldier’s family have been notified and they are taken care of by a psychologist.

The case is being clarified by the Military Police under the supervision of the prosecutor’s office. According to the Polish Press Agency (PAP), the case is being handled by the Military Affairs Department of the Białystok-North District Prosecutor’s Office.

Violent and non-violent attempts to cross the border

The Border Guard reported that three groups of foreigners (5, 6 and 11 people) were apprehended in the section protected by the Border Guard unit in Dubicze Cerkiewne. The spokesman for the Border Guard, Anna Michalska, pointed out that the attempts by these groups to cross the border were not violent.

“There were different nations in the groups, including citizens of Nigeria, Ghana, Tajikistan, Syria, Egypt and Yemen,” she noted.

In the section protected by the Border Guard post in Czeremcha, a group of nine Iraqis, with the support of Belarusian services, forcibly forced the border. Stones were thrown at Polish patrols and they were blinded by lasers.

Migration crisis on the Polish-Belarusian border

Last year, the Border Guard recorded 39,700 attempts to illegally cross the Polish-Belarusian border. In December, there were over 1,700 attempts, 8,900 in November, 17,500 in October, 7,700 in September, and 3,500 in August.

A ban on stay in the strip encompassing 183 localities in the Podlaskie and Lubelskie provinces in the border zone with Belarus was introduced for three months, from December 1 to March 1. The inhabitants and emergency services are excluded from this ban. Previously, a state of emergency was in force in the same area.

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