Inhabitants of the vicinity of Białowieża tell how they helped migrants who got stuck in the swamps and transported them to the clinic on their own. – These were people who were partially unconscious or gave the impression. Covered by what I think was a tent tarpaulin, or just a tarpaulin, and they were all shaking and just plain horror in their eyes. And helplessness – reports one of the men taking part in the action.
Inhabitants of the vicinity of Białowieża said that migrants were stuck in the marshes in the zone covered by the state of emergency. Some of them were exhausted and unable to walk. As reported by the residents, it was they who transported the migrants to the clinic on their own, because neither an ambulance nor the Border Guard arrived at the place.
Mother with children covered with a tarpaulin
– They were partially unconscious or appearing to be partially unconscious. It was two children with their mother. The youngest boy had very swollen legs and could not stand on those legs at all. The mother and daughter, on the other hand, seemed to have limited consciousness – reported one of the residents in an interview with TVN24.
He described that the children were cuddled up to their mother. Covered by what I think was a tent tarpaulin, or just a tarpaulin, and they were all shaking and just plain horror in their eyes. And helplessness – he added.
– This mother and these children had to be carried across the swamp. A friend brought a hammock and we carried the boy in the hammock – reported one of the men who helped the migrants. – It seems to me that if I had missed these people, the media would change the statistics of people frozen on the Polish side – he said.
“We need humanitarian aid, support here”
As reported by the inhabitants, there are more and more such situations. – If we see children sitting somewhere on the ground who cannot walk, and they cannot communicate with us often, because they do not know any European language, it is difficult to pass by such children indifferently and leave them in this forest – said one of the men. – When someone finds such a person, we inform each other. We are trying to provide them with at least some basic means of survival. At least water, because they are often people who have not drunk for a long time, or drank dirty water from puddles from rivers – he added. – Just dying children in our yard, this is a drama after all. We need humanitarian aid here, support, not convoys to Belarus, but convoys to make campsites here for those refugees who are unable to go. And there are a lot of them here – appealed one of the inhabitants. He described that “it is enough to go a bit into the forest and there are traces of them”. – They’re there. There are people who cannot go on. There are big groups. From my perspective, it looks like a lot, a lot of people are crossing this line and the services are not able to stop them – said one of the men.
A state of emergency in the border area
A state of emergency has been in force on the border zone since September 2. Journalists and activists from non-governmental organizations, among others, are not allowed there. All available information comes from the Border Guard and government officials. The state of emergency, initially for 30 days, was extended from October 1 for a further 60 days. According to the government, the migration crisis at the border is caused by the regime of Alyaksandr Lukashenka. Belarus’s actions are called a “hybrid war against Poland”.
From the beginning of the year, the Border Guard recorded nearly 26 thousand. attempts to illegally cross the Polish-Belarusian border, including 14.2 thousand. in October itself.
Main photo source: TVN24