Lukashenko pushing illegal Iraqi refugees over the border into Lithuania

Lukashenko pushing illegal Iraqi refugees over the border into Lithuania
Flights from Baghdad to Minsk have doubled as Lukashenko tries makes good on his threat to "flood the EU with refugees and drugs".
By bne IntelliNews June 13, 2021


Belarus' President Alexander Lukashenko is transporting Iraqi immigrants to Minsk and helping them illegally cross the border into Lithuania, as he makes good on a threat to “flood the EU with drugs and refugees.”  

Flights between Bagdad and Minsk have doubled in the last month, as a Belarusian state-owned travel agency flies the would-be immigrants to the EU into Minsk, where they are automatically given entry visas.  

The migrants are then bussed to the 650-km border between Belarus and Lithuania where state agents help them cross illegally into the EU, according to reports.  

The number of illegal immigrants has grown so rapidly that Lithuania has built a camp near the border to hold over 300 people that have detained as police struggle to arrest the migrants crossing into Lithuania.  

“Illegal immigration has doubled in Lithuanian from the Belarusian direction. Vilnius is building a migrant tent camp on the immediate border with Belarus that can accommodate up to 350 people. Earlier this year, Lukashenko threatened in a Gaddafian style that he would allow illegal immigrants and drugs to flood the EU. Lukashenko appears to be keeping his word,” political analyst Dionis Cenusa said on Twitter.  

The opposition Telegram news channel NEXTA released a raised the alarm on June 6.

"We heard Lukashenko's statements that they will flood us with migrants and drugs, but we've been observing that increase in the flow of illegal migrants for some time already. If we compare the figures, so we have 189 illegal migrants from Belarus this year, which is double from last year," she said during a sitting of the Lithuanian parliament's Committee on National Security and Defence.

Lukashenko has openly threatened the EU, saying last month that "we were stopping migrants and drugs – now you will catch them and eat them yourselves".