Monday, November 15, 2021

Using the Weak and Vulnerable

 Through very little fault of their own thousands of migrants and refugees are trapped at the EU-Belarus borders enduring freezing weather, have become pawns in a cruel game of diplomacy.

The latest flashpoint finds them trapped in crude camps between Polish guards on one side and Belarusian guards on the other with very little being done to alleviate their suffering. Several have died from exposure. 

Alexander Lukashenko, the president of Belarus, runs an authoritarian and corrupt regime resulting in the European Union imposing. Lukashenko has retaliated by arranging the movement of refugees and migrants to enter the EU nations. It is not out of humanitarian concern for their misery but merely to make them an instrument of political pressure.

 In the conflict-torn regions of the Middle East like Iraq, Syria, Yemen, and Afghanistan the  Belarus government have relaxed visa rules, providing a safer, easier route to the EU border.

People receive Belarusian visas and can buy tickets on flights run by the state-operated airline, to go to Minsk, Belarus’s capital, where some have been housed in government-run hotels. But far from providing aid and sanctuary to the migrants, the Lukashenko regime is directing them toward the borders of Poland, Latvia, and Lithuania in an attempt to pressure the EU to lift sanctions on Belarus, described as Europes last dictatorship.

 Aid agencies and journalists are forbidden to go to the encampments now designated as an exclusion zone yet the distress of the migrants have led local people to try to relieve their suffering. A network nearby people are delivering food, drinking water, warm clothes and provisions for children.


No comments: