On Thursday, Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki and his counterpart from the Iraqi Kurdish Regional Government (KRG), Masrour Barzani, held a phone conservation to discuss the migrant crisis at the Poland-Belarus border.
According to a statement by the KRG, Morawiecki and Barzani described the migrants as “victims of organized crime” and agreed that the migrants were deceived by “organized human traffickers.”
During the phone conversation, they also evaluated measures taken at airports and borders, as well as efforts to facilitate the voluntary return of migrants to their homes.
EU countries bordering Belarus — Lithuania, Latvia, and Poland — have reported a dramatically growing number of irregular crossings since August 2021.
Sharply increasing from just 150 in 2020, over 8,000 people have tried to enter the EU via the Belarus-Poland border thus far in 2021.
Belarus reaches out to potential travelers through seemingly official channels, including diplomatic missions and travel agencies, and invites them to Belarus by offering visas, according to the EU. They are allegedly guided to the EU border afterwards.
At least 2,000 people, including women and children, have been stuck in the Belarusian-Polish border area in dire conditions over the last week.