WARSAW, September 2. /TASS/. The President of Poland Andrzej Duda approved the government’s decision to impose a state of emergency at the border with Belarus, spokesman Blazej Spychalski said Thursday.
"The president has just made a decision to order the imposition of the state of emergency," he said.
The state of emergency will be introduced at a section of the Polish-Belarusian border at a distance of three kilometers from it. It will cover 115 settlements in the Podlaskie Voivodeship (province) and 68 - in the Lublin Voivodeship in east Poland. In particular, it would involve a ban on all mass events and festivals, plus an increase in police patrols and document checks.
The decree enters into effect immediately after its official publication and will stay in effect for 30 days. The imposition of the state of emergency must also be reviewed by the Sejm (the lower chamber of the parliament). The meeting on this issue is expected to take place on Monday.
According to the Polish Ministry of the Interior, over 3,000 attempts to illegally cross the border from the territory of Belarus have been registered since early August, compared to only 120 in 2020. The Polish Ministry of Defense announced the construction of a 2.5 meter-high barbed wire fence at the border. The Army has dispatched 2,000 soldiers to assist in border control. The fence is planned to cover about 180-190 kilometers. The total length of the Polish-Belarusian border is 418 kilometers.
In late May, Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko stated that his country served as a barrier for illegal immigration to Eastern Europe, but, considering the West’s political pressure, Minsk should reconsider whether it should continue doing so.