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Polish police said Saturday they had found the body of a Syrian youth in a forest near the border with Belarus, becoming the latest victim of the refugee crisis on the European Union’s eastern border, according to the Associated Press.
The regime in Minsk is accused of encouraging illegal immigration across borders to European Union members Poland, Lithuania and Latvia, which the authorities deny.
The three countries are strengthening their borders, in an attempt to close the newly opened immigration route, and the situation is getting more dangerous with the approach of winter.
Police said the body was found on Friday near the village of Volka Terecowska. She added that the exact cause of death could not be determined.
At the beginning of November, Polish media reported that the body of an Iraqi had been found at the border between Belarus and Poland, the tenth migrant to have died at this border since the summer, according to AFP.
For their part, the Belarusian border guards said that the Iraqi man died on the Polish side of the border after crossing from Belarus.
“If such an incident had occurred on the Polish side, the border guards would have been informed,” the Gazeta Wyborcza newspaper quoted a Polish border guard spokesman as saying.
According to the newspaper, the bodies of seven of the 10 migrants who died while crossing the border were found on the Polish side.
Thousands of migrants, mostly from Africa and the Middle East, have crossed from Syria and Iraq, or have tried to cross the Belarusian border in recent months to Lithuania, Poland or Latvia.
The European Union suspects that the Belarusian President, Alexander Lukashenko, intentionally caused the migration in response to the economic sanctions imposed by the (EU) due to the crackdown on the opposition, following the 2020 elections.
Migrants report that Belarusian forces often force them to cross the border and that they are confronted by Polish border guards, as a result of which they remain stranded at the border in increasingly harsh climatic conditions.
After the massive wave of immigration to the European Union in 2015, Europe reinforced its borders to prevent entry of new arrivals, but tens of thousands try to enter each year, embarking on dangerous and sometimes deadly journeys by sea and land, according to the Associated Press.
Since the summer, thousands have been lured toward what appeared to be a new and easy route into Europe via Belarus.
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