Migrant crisis at the EU -Belarus border is a new headache for Ukrainian officials who are feverishly are scrambling for measures to prevent crowds of migrants from breaking into the country.
In an interview for 1+1 TV channel on Thursday, interior minister Denys Monastyrsky said the government is poised to ‘construct a [protected] border next year between Ukraine and Russia, Ukraine and Belarus’ that will cover over a thousand kilometers.
Border control and enforcement agencies have already stepped up patrolling at ten border points that can be sought by migrants for illegal entry to Ukraine, said the minister, noting that Kyiv is planning to stage territorial defense exercise near the northern border.
‘I have issued an order for police to employ community and border patrol units in those territories. They have permits for traumatic guns’ use. We issued over 200 thousand permits there. Those people should be called up for drills at the Ukrainian-Belarus border’.
According to the interior minister, the worst-case scenario to be averted is ‘mass border breakthroughs’, which will require ‘consolidation of forces’ and coordination between Border control, National Guards, National police and emergency agencies.