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The situation on the Polish-Belarusian border. Bishop Krzysztof Zadarko comments

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Bishop Krzysztof Zadarko, chairman of the Council of the Polish Episcopal Conference for Migration, Tourism and Pilgrimages, commented on the situation of migrants on the border with Belarus and the actions of the Polish government in “Faktach po Faktach”. – Since 1,300 people were detained during almost two months, I see no problem why 30 people became the criterion deciding that our country may collapse or the entire European Union – said the hierarch.

Piotr Kraśko, the host of the “Facts after Facts” program, noted that the Church was very firm in the matters of abortion and IVF. When asked if the Church would call the rulers equally firmly to help those who camped in Usnarz Górny, Bishop Krzysztof Zadarko replied: – You probably have no doubts that our voice was firm.


– I have been listening to messages from various Italian and German episcopates since 2015, when this drama (of migrants – ed.) Was much bigger. And it was always the same voice, it seems to me, in the spirit of the Gospel. We also have the same voice. The problem lies in the details that we no longer have access to as a church – he explained.

Bishop Zadarko: politicians should clearly argue why this case is played out this way

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– I have great complaints about the fact that we are not able to deal with 30 people who have been made a security criterion or a threat to this security – said Bishop Zadarko. He referred to the migrant camp, which was established in August at the Polish-Belarusian border in Usnarz Górny.

He added that “since 1,300 people were detained during almost two months, because these are the data provided by the Border Guard today, I see no problem why these 30 people became the criterion that our country may collapse or the whole European Union “.

He stressed that “politicians should make it clear why this case is played out this way.” – For me, these are at this point incomprehensible justifications that flow from the mouths of some decision-makers – he added.

Bishop Zadarko: I can only appeal for humanitarian sensitivity, and we are doing it

Asked whether there was a sense of defeat that the Church was simply not being listened to on this matter, he replied that “we are doing what is possible”. He mentioned the involvement of Caritas Polska and the activity of non-governmental organizations. “There is this answer and there is an action,” he assessed.

He noted that “if someone tells him that the state is in danger, he is unable to verify whether this answer is true or not.” – I can only appeal for humanitarian sensitivity, and we are doing it. This is something that is within my remit. However, I am neither the minister of national defense, nor the minister of foreign affairs or internal affairs, so that I would give a competent answer. However, I am also not a reviewer of the consciences of those politicians who declare themselves to be Catholics and are Catholics, because it is their choice of conscience – he emphasized.

– My appeal is to take seriously the non-governmental organizations that walk along the border in the forests, or in neighboring towns outside the state of emergency, and extend their hand to these people, giving them clothes and food. Why should they do it in such a little wild way? – He was asking. – We should organize it in a human, dignified way, so that there is no mutual accusation that someone here is a traitor to our country or that someone is acting for the sake of our country, and the other shows some extraordinary heart – appealed the bishop.

Bishop Zadarko: putting everyone in one sack discourages them from helping at all

The bishop admitted that “we have the right not to let people into our country if there is a reasonable suspicion that they are dangerous people.” – But what we heard today, for example at the conference – quite awkwardly, I do not want to use the suspicion that there is a bad intention … some very dishonest people, it discourages them from helping at all – he assessed.

Bishop Zadarko said that the description in black and white should be avoided. – A joint conversation, a dialogue on this matter, should have been organized a long time ago. I can only appeal that this matter should not only be the domain of our government, because there are non-governmental organizations, there is society. We have the right to know more than just a one-sided message, he emphasized.

Bishop Zadarko: putting everyone in one sack discourages them from helping at allTVN24

What did government officials say?

The head of the Ministry of Interior and Administration, Mariusz Kaminski, spoke at a press conference on Mondaythat “we have around 1,200 irregular migrants apprehended in guarded centers.” – Many of them have no documents, many have false documents. They are meticulously examined by our services in terms of their real identity – he added.

The spokesman of the minister coordinator, Stanisław Żaryn, described that the services had so far established “the identity and route of arrival to Poland of several hundred illegal migrants staying in Border Guard centers”. – On the basis of preliminary information, two-thirds of the respondents were referred for deep verification due to the fact that the information already available indicates a threat to the security of the Republic of Poland, related to the presence of these people on our territory – he said.

– The current information on every fourth respondent indicates their dangerous connections and participation in illegal practices – said Żaryn.

During the press conference, slides with materials from the detained people’s mobile phones were presented. The photos and screenshots are to indicate, inter alia, their possible terrorist activity or connections with paramilitary organizations.

One of the slides shown at the conferenceTVN24

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