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Children and migrants trapped at Poland's border wall

Children and migrants trapped at Poland’s border wall

Campaigners claim Belarus won’t allow them to turn around
Approximately 30 migrants, some of whom are minors, have been stranded at Poland’s border wall with Belarus for three days, according to Polish human rights groups on Sunday.

Although the refugees were outside of Poland’s border wall, border group activists said they were on Polish soil and Belarus was refusing to let them go back.

They are not safe in Belarus, according to campaigner Marta Staniszewska.

The Belarusian services, according to this organization, threaten them with beatings or execution if they return, Staniszewska told The Associated Press.

According to Staniszewska, the migrants claim that several of them are ill, one girl has a toothache, and the kids have bug bites.

On Sunday, a representative of Poland’s Ombudsman’s Office paid them a visit and spoke with them, but subsequently told the media that the Polish Border Guard should decide whether to let them enter the country.

“Such applications should be accepted,” said Maciej Grzeskowiak, “if these persons are in fact under the jurisdiction of the (Polish) Border Guard and declare their willingness to apply for international protection.”

Poland built a nearly 190 km (117 mi) long metal wall last year to block the entry of thousands of migrants from Asia and Africa through Belarus.

In punishment for penalties, the authoritarian Belarusian president Alexander Lukashenko has been charged with encouraging unauthorized border crossings. Lukashenko disputes that he promotes immigration to Europe.

The leader of Poland’s right-wing ruling party and most influential politician, Jaroslaw Kaczynski, has stated that it was a wise decision to construct the wall. According to him, it was defending Poland and the EU against hostile actions by Belarus and Russia.

The Border Guard estimates that every day, up to 150 migrants of various nationalities attempt to enter Poland illegally, frequently carrying Russian visas in their documents.

These groups have occasionally thrown rocks and sticks at the border guards from behind the wall, but they later seemed to disperse. From Poland’s perspective, it is impossible to know what happens to the groups.

Source: ABC news

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