Frontex: EU must be prepared for Russia to weaponize migration

Finnish-Russian border.
Finnish-Russian border. Source: SCANPIX/EPA/Roni Rekomaa

Frontex, the EU's border guard, said Russia may try to weaponize migrants along the block's borders to promote its geopolitical interests in the future. The EU must be prepared, said the agency's head Hans Leijtens.

"It is a way to pressure the bloc as well as European solidarity," Leijtens told Finnish newspaper Helsingin Sanomat (link in Finnish).

He said if Russia did bring a large number of migrants to the border, Finland could receive help from Frontex. 

"We are aware of the threat," he said (link in English), adding forces to the EU's external borders within days.

When it comes to Finland, he said logistics pose the greatest challenge.

"Finland is a big country. [Transporting Frontex officials to Finland] requires planning. Can Finland accommodate large numbers of people?" he asked.

Leijtens visited Finland's border in August.

Latvia, Lithuania, and Poland have faced the same issue along their borders with Belarus, in what officials call a "hybrid attack". Estonia is currently assisting on the Latvian-Belarusian border.


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Editor: Helen Wright

Source: STT/BNS

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