Liimets: Estonia must stress seriousness of Belarus crisis internationally

Eva-Maria Liimets
Eva-Maria Liimets Source: ERR

Estonia's role in the Belarusian-Polish border crisis is to emphasize the depth of the issue and support Poland, Minister of Foreign Affairs Eva-Maria Liimets (Center) said on Thursday.

Speaking on ETV's morning program "Terevisioon" about Estonia's role in the crisis - as the country does not share a border with Belarus - Liimets said: "Of course we will influence the other Member States in the European Union and clarify the situation."

She repeated that Estonia has been following the situation closely since July when migrants first started crossing Belarus' border with Lithuania.

Speaking about the next steps, she said there will be a meeting of EU foreign minister next Monday.

"I hope there will be a political consensus that the next round of sanctions against Belarus must be adopted and, of course, the sanctions that will affect the specific individuals involved in this illegal immigration," the minister said.

Liimets said the aim is to stop the immigrants from arriving in Belarus. "We are talking to third countries about it and in August, I talked to the foreign minister of Iraq and with a Turkish colleague."

The UN Security Council discussed the crisis on Tuesday and Liimets said it will be discussed again on Thursday.

Liimets said the most important thing now is to inform the international community about the depth of the problem.

Regarding the possibility of restrictions on airlines, Liimets said it is difficult to issue orders to private companies, but the European Union is holding negotiations.

On Monday thousands of migrants were led to the Polish-Belarusian by Belarus' security guards. They have mostly traveled to Minsk from the middle east.


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Editor: Roberta Vaino, Helen Wright

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