Germany blames Belarus for migration crisis, pledges joint EU response

The Polish Ministry of Defense showed the aerial footage of a very large crowd of illegal migrants gathering at the border. The people are seen standing near the Bruzgi checkpoint on the Belarusian side and the Kuznitsa settlement on the Polish side. The agency posted the video from the helicopter on Twitter.

According to the Belarusian border service, as many as 1,000 migrants have approached the Polish border. Some of them have already managed to overcome barbed wire obstacles to enter the territory of the European Union.

Most of the people in the crows are standing near the fence, with Polish security forces in bulletproof vests and helmets lining up near the fence too. The head of the Polish Ministry of Defense, Mariusz Blaschak, said that as many as 12,000 soldiers were on duty at the border.

Earlier in Warsaw, officials admitted that fatalities could be possible during an incident on the border with Belarus. Poland's Deputy Foreign Minister Piotr Wawrzyk is sure that the current escalation at the border comes as a result of the policies by Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko. Wawrzyk accused Minsk of transporting migrants to the state border.

The crowd of migrants was spotted for the first time on the highway in the Grodno region of Belarus in the morning of November 8. People with backpacks, suitcases and bags were blocking traffic on two lanes at once.

EU states ready for sharp aggravation

Lithuania, Latvia and Poland have recently reported an increase in the number of illegal migrants on the border with Belarus. The EU countries blame Minsk for stirring up the migration crisis, but the President of the republic, Alexander Lukashenko, said that he would no longer restrain the flow of refugees to the European Union.

The border guards of Belarus have repeatedly reported that the neighboring countries push migrants into the territory of Belarus. To protect itself from illegal immigrants, Poland implemented  a state of emergency on the territories bordering Belarus.

Lithuania sent troops to the borders with Belarus and Poland. An additional contingent of soldiers is to be put on alert, the head of the state border guard service, General Rustamas Liubajevas said at the meeting of the National Security and Defense Committee.

Lithuania took measures to strengthen border controls in connection with the appearance of a large crowd of migrants at the Polish-Belarusian border. The Lithuanian authorities want to be prepared for different scenarios as the situation develops, whereas the border service coordinates actions with the police and headquarters of the Lithuanian army.

There is evidence proving that the Belarusian authorities sent migrants to the border with Poland deliberately, in order to provoke a crisis, representatives for the German Foreign Ministry said. In addition, German officials said that the EU would take efforts to respond to the actions of the Belarusian authorities, RIA Novosti reports.

“The situation continues to be of utmost concern to us. We can see the regime of [Belarusian President Alexander] Lukashenko calling migrants to Belarus to send them on a dangerous journey towards the EU. There is evidence that the regime in Minsk ... is constantly sending people to the border,” ministry spokeswoman Andrea Sasse said.