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The Polish gov'ts policy of turning back flows of migrants at the Belarusian border could have political impacts in Germany. The Lukashenko regime in Belarus is funneling migrants from the Middle East and Asia towards its border with Poland in an effort to destabilise the gov't in Warsaw and cause political issues for the EU.

  • Camino Mortera at the Centre for European Reform think tank sums up the difficult situation for the Polish gov't: "...EU countries have an obligation to secure Schengen's external borders [...] there is nothing in EU law that says they cannot be built...That said, the problem in the Belarussian/Polish border is about pushbacks. EU countries are obliged, by intl' and EU law, to stop migrants going back to dangerous places. This also includes leaving them freezing in the border's no-man's land."
  • Given that many of the migrants crossing into Poland have Germany as their final intended destination, the issue is having political repercussions in Berlin.
  • With three German political parties currently engaged in coalition talks following the September federal election, the issue could not have come at a worse time. Marcel Dirsus at the University of Kiel explains: "German conservatives coming out in support of Poland's decision to seal its border and push back migrants to Belarus. It will be interesting to see how the new German government positions itself given that Social Democrats and Greens have different views on migration than the FDP. Social Democrats (and especially Greens) would incur heavy domestic political costs if they voiced support for Warsaw. [...] Free Democrats have the opposite problem. Party leadership has to signal that they won't be consumed in a left-wing coalition and fighting irregular migration is a big concern for many FDP voters. But do they risk a clash with their new coalition partners? That's risky too. [...]Their positions are simply too different to satisfy everyone."
MNI London Bureau | +44 203-865-0981 |

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