Latvia-Belarus border emergency extended again

Due to the rapid increase in the number of attempts to illegally cross the Latvian-Belarusian border as well as the Lithuanian-Belarusian border, the state of emergency has been extended on the border for the seventh time. It is now in force until August 10, 2023, according to a government decision on May 2, LSM reports.

The state of emergency is in force in the municipalities of Ludza, Krāslava, Augšdaugava, and Daugavpils.  Previously, the state of emergency was determined by May 10. It was first declared in August 2021.

In January this year, 344 persons were prevented from illegally crossing the State border, 377 persons in February, 559 persons in March, 776 persons in April and 95 in May. Meanwhile, in 2022, a total of 5286 people were detained from illegally crossing the country's border. In 2021, 4045 people were detained from illegally crossing the country's border since August 11.

The Ministry of Interior also said that the war on Ukraine launched by Russia and openly supported by Belarus was to be seen as an additional risk factor and a possible motivation for Belarus to continue its efforts to destabilize the situation on the country's border with Latvia, “that is, put pressure on the European Union and NATO”.

Information on the crossing of an illegal State border from the territory of Belarus is still being received from the competent authorities of Lithuania and Poland, the Ministry of Interior noted. It is therefore essential in the Ministry's view to ensure that a joint international coordinated action is taken in order to ensure the equivalent guarding of the borders of the countries of the whole region with Belarus.

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