Several hundred migrants from Iraq will be evacuated from the Belarusian capital to Erbil and Baghdad on Thursday, said the spokesman for the Iraqi ministry of diplomacy, Ahmed al-Shahaf. The Iraqi ministry has published a video showing people waiting in the departure hall of the Minsk airport.
The evacuation flight from Minsk to Iraq takes place at the time of the intensifying migration crisis on the border of Belarus and the European Union countries. As spokesman for the Iraqi Ministry of Foreign Affairs Ahmed al-Shahaf reported, the ministry “is working hard to ensure the highest level of response to voluntary return” to Iraq. He added that 430 migrants are expected to return to Erbil and Baghdad on Thursday.
The Iraqi Ministry of Foreign Affairs has released a video showing Iraqis waiting in the departure hall of the Minsk airport to return to the country. According to the state news agency INA, the Iraqi consulate in Belarus continues to register people who wish to return.
Migration crisis on the border with Belarus
From the beginning of the year, the Polish Border Guard recorded over 33 thousand. attempts to illegally cross the border with Belarus, of which 5.5 thousand. in November, nearly 17.3 thousand. in October, almost 7.7 thous. in September and over 3.5 thousand. in August.
From September 2, due to the migratory pressure in the border zone with Belarus in 183 localities in the voivodeship In Podlasie and Lublin regions, a state of emergency is in force. It was introduced for 30 days under the ordinance of President Andrzej Duda, issued at the request of the Council of Ministers. The Seym agreed to extend the state of emergency for another 60 days.
By the middle of next year, a steel fence will be erected on the border with Belarus, topped with barbed wire and enriched with electronic devices. The 180 km long and 5.5 m high dam will be built in Podlasie. Along the border, motion sensors as well as day and night cameras will be installed. The Bug River is a natural dam in the Lublin region.
Meanwhile, other countries and airlines are limiting tourist flights to Belarus for citizens of Iraq, Syria and other Middle East countries. On Thursday, the Belarusian state agency BeltTA informed that Belarusian Belavia will suspend flight permits for citizens of Afghanistan, Iraq, Lebanon, Libya, Syria and Yemen to Minsk from the airport in Uzbek Tashkent.
Main photo source: Reuters