Warning signal to Belarus: Poland hints at possible suspension of cross-border rail freight traffic
A week ago, Poland was forced to close the Bruzgi/Kuźnica road border crossing due to the accumulation of several thousand migrants along the frontier. However, the situation is worsening day by day as the Belarusian authorities continue to manipulate the migrants from the Middle East. As a potential counteraction, Poland allows for a possibility to close other checkpoints and temporarily suspend cross-border rail freight traffic.
To date, the Bruzgi/Kuźnica road border crossing is the only checkpoint that was closed due to the migrant crisis on the EU’s eastern border. Poland explained its decision by the provocations inspired and orchestrated by the Belarusian side. “The closure of the crossing in Kuźnica resulted from the fact that Belarusians provoked this migration situation, the illegal attempts to cross the border. This was the first warning signal to Belarusians. They were incredulous that we would be able to close this crossing for an indefinite period. They know very well that in a moment we can close further crossings, as well as rail traffic,” Mariusz Kamiński, Poland’s Minister of the Interior and Administration, said on the air of the BMF FM Radio.
As the passenger trains have not been running between the countries since the past year, the Polish minister was talking about the rail freight traffic. If this happens, Belarus could find itself in isolation. “Belarus is an important transit country. We know this, we consider this, we take everything into account and we send appropriate signals to the regime to end such actions because they will be in complete isolation, not only political but also economical,” the Polish minister specified.
According to Mariusz Kamiński, the suspension of cross-border rail freight traffic between the two countries is just one of the possible incentives to force Belarus stopping to encourage illegal flows of migrants, mainly from Iraq and Syria. “We still have a whole range of influencing the regime, we have very severe options for the regime to apply retaliation,” he noted. What option will be applied depends on the further developments on the Polish-Belarusian border.