Eastern Europe: Migrant Crisis Risks Military Clash

by The Chicago Times Staff

November 11, 2021

MINSK – European Union nations bordering Belarus warned on Thursday that the migrant crisis on the EU’s eastern borders may escalate into a military conflict, while Ukraine, not an EU member, said it would send more troops to reinforce its border.

Belarus’ defense minister, Major General Viktor Khrenin, previously stated that in response to a buildup of Polish military forces near the border, Belarus would be required to take “appropriate response measures,” both independently and in collaboration with its ally, Russia.

Ukraine has announced increased combat drills and the deployment of 8,500 more troops and police along the country’s long northern border with Belarus.

The EU claims that Minsk is pushing out thousands of migrants from war-torn regions of the world to try to breach its borders, and that additional penalties might be imposed on Belarus and the airlines that transport the migrants as early as Monday.

Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko promised to retaliate, possibly by cutting down the flow of Russian natural gas via Belarus.  There has been no official comment on a gas supply embargo by Russia which is allied with Belarus.

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