Minister: Finland could close its border at the Belarusian border due to the migrant situation

Minister for Foreign Affairs of Finland Pekka Haavisto said on Tuesday that Belarus must take care of the country’s refugees and cannot push them across other countries ’borders.

Belarus has transported migrants and refugees to help them reach neighboring Poland, Lithuania and Latvia.

Haavisto said that Finland has legislation on combating hybrid threats, which can be used to close the border temporarily if necessary.

The issue of the Belarusian-Polish border was raised at a joint press conference with Foreign Minister Haavisto and his Latvian counterpart. Edgar Rinkevich In Helsinki on Tuesday.

A large number of migrants have accumulated at the Belarusian-Polish border since Monday. According to the BBC, there are at least 2,000 migrants on the Belarusian-Polish border late Tuesday afternoon.

The European Union has blamed the leader of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko, on the smuggling of migrants from third countries across EU borders.

Haavisto said that Finland and the EU condemned the actions of Belarus.

"This is a hybrid activity and we need to work together against"

EU presidency on Monday Ursula von der Leyen called on the Member States to impose new sanctions on Belarus because of the problem. He said the use "immigrants for political purposes cannot be accepted," according to several media outlets, including France24.

Haavisto said the new sanctions package will target airlines from countries that bring immigrants to Belarus. He added that the activities of the European Border and Coast Guard Agency, Frontex, needed to be strengthened.

Meanwhile, Latvian Foreign Minister Rinkēvičs describes the situation on the Latvian-Belarusian border "tense but stable" said that the matter and the situation at the Polish border are being monitored.

In August, Latvia declared a state of emergency to return migrants from the Latvian border to Belarus.

Minister of the Interior: Finland is prepared

Minister of the Interior of Finland Maria Ohisalo said separately on Tuesday that Finland would defend its borders if necessary.

Ohisalo called on the EU to take joint action against the hybrid threat posed by Belarus.

Meeting with media representatives at the Parliament House, Ohisalo stated that hybrid threats at the EU’s borders are a new phenomenon and that the right ways to combat them are being sought.

He said that Finland is already ready to defend its borders and the EU’s common external border if they are the target of state-sponsored mass immigration or other hybrid threats.

Ohisalo emphasized that according to the international agreements signed by Finland, asylum seekers must be given the opportunity to submit an asylum application upon arrival at at least one border crossing point.

The interior minister said the EU and member states should seek to influence third countries from which migrants are leaving with false aspirations.

Responding to the situation on the Polish, Latvian and Lithuanian borders on Monday, Ohisalo tweeted that he found the actions in Belarus very reprehensible.

Source: The Nordic Page


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