Immigration is NOT just an American political issue….
The empting of the Middle East is worldwide issue…
Thousands of migrants, unwilling weapons in a geopolitical struggle, in peril in a freezing border zone. Far-right nationalists marching on the streets of Warsaw, calling for harsh action against asylum seekers. Belligerent national leaders facing off across a razor-wire border.
A standoff over migrants along the European Union’s eastern flank, one that E.U. leaders say has been manufactured by the authoritarian government of Belarus, is growing more volatile, highlighting the raw emotions driving a crisis on that country’s border with Poland.
So far the only casualties have been the migrants, stuck in the struggle between Belarus and countries on the frontline of the European Union, like Poland and Lithuania. Amid growing fears of a humanitarian disaster in the thick forests that straddle the border, a 14-year-old Kurdish boy from Iraq was reported by Polish news media to have frozen to death overnight on the Belarus side of the frontier.
Eight others, according to the official count, died earlier from exposure.
Aid workers, who are barred along with journalists and independent doctors from entering the border zone, believe the real death toll is higher and will rise sharply as winter sets in and pushes already freezing temperatures even lower…
With soldiers sealing off the border zone from news media and aid workers, the reported death of the 14-year-old Kurdish boy could not be confirmed. The boy’s body, according to a report by OKO.press, a Polish website, had been taken away overnight by Belarusian security services.
The crisis has threatened to entangle countries far beyond Eastern Europe, including Turkey and the United Arab Emirates, whose airlines have been accused of playing into Mr. Lukashenko’s hands by flying migrants to Minsk, the Belarusian capital. The European Union said earlier this week that it is considering blacklisting “third-country airlines active in human trafficking.”
Turkey’s Foreign Ministry on Thursday responded angrily to accusations that Turkish Airlines, by operating flights to Minsk, had aggravated the crisis. Turkey, the ministry said in a statement, had played no part in the crisis and, having hosted millions of refugees from Syria, “is one of the countries that best understands the test Poland, Lithuania and Latvia are left to face, and is in full support of its allies.”….
The United States is preparing “follow up sanctions” designed to hold leaders in Belarus accountable for “ongoing attacks on democracy, human rights and international norms,” a spokesman for the White House’s National Security Council said on Wednesday.