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PPA puts more barriers on Estonian-Russian border

Additional concrete barriers were placed on the bridge connecting Estonia and Russia on Friday evening as preparations continue for a possible future closure of the border.

Last week, 10 concrete pyramids were installed on November 16 after 19 Somali and Syrian citizens were allowed to cross the Russian border and try to enter Estonia without the correct documents. Usually, the Russian side does not allow people to cross without a legal basis.

Today 15 more pyramids were added, "Aktuaalne kaamera" reported. This will allow the Police and Border Guard Board (PPA) to show the border quickly if necessary.

Two of the four traffic lanes on the bridge were also shut last week.

The PPA has said the border crossing may close if the situation worsens.

"At the moment, we have been monitoring the situation in Finland. On the basis of this, we are prepared, in case of similar or similar migration attacks on Narva, to close the border crossing. At the moment, we are installing them at the side of the bridge so that they do not interfere with the traffic," said Marek Liiva, head of the Narva border crossing.

Finland has shut all but one of its border points with Russia, and the Estonian authorities are watching to see if the migration flow redirects to Estonia.

Speaking at a press conference Friday, Prime Minister Kaja Kallas (Reform) said authorities know what to do if the situation on Estonia's eastern border escalates.

So far 30 migrants have been let through by Russia, a much smaller number than in Finland, and the border guard has sent them all back.

"We are not under attack yet, we are ready to close our border if necessary but we do not see it is necessary right now," she said. "We have different levels of plans ready, but we are ready to implement them if necessary... We will see what comes next."

If the barriers are not needed now, they will be in the future as Russia is planning to close the Ivangorod crossing on February 1.


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Editor: Barbara Oja, Helen Wright

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