On Monday, the Lithuanian Ministry of Interior announced that the Cabinet had approved the proposal to erect a 508-kilometer physical protective barrier on the border with Belarus.
Such a decision was made after the Belarusian armed forces forcibly pushed a group of about 35 migrants onto the territory of Lithuania and entered the country themselves, according to TheSchengen.com.
Lithuanian Prime Minister Ingrida Simonetto stressed that “a physical barrier is necessary for us to repel the hybrid attack carried out by the Belarusian regime against Lithuania and the entire European Union.”
According to a press release issued by the Ministry of the Interior, the planned height of the protective fence will be at least three meters. As for the material, the fence will be metal that is resistant to changing conditions, and it has been observed that part of it must be placed in the ground to prevent all forms of illegal immigration.
The initial cost of the entire project is expected to reach 52 million euros.
In the wake of the decision, Lithuanian Interior Minister Agni Pilotito said that the construction of the protective fence is currently one of the main priorities of the country, according to him, the fence will serve not only as a defensive wall for Lithuania, but for all EU countries. .
Except for the decision to erect a protective fence, the Lithuanian authorities have also called on EU bodies to impose sanctions on Belarusian entities that help migrants reach EU member states.
The Lithuanian Ministry of the Interior noted that illegal actions of Belarusian officials were recorded, and all information on the violation of state borders will be used in a preliminary investigation that will be conducted by the Lithuanian authorities.
“We cannot tolerate this bold provocation of 12 Belarusian officials who crossed the borders of the Republic of Lithuania today. We immediately responded to the provocation and took the decision to increase the border protection capacity,” said Lithuanian Minister of the Interior, Agni Belotaito, on the incident.
Irregular immigration rates in Lithuania rose significantly after the Prime Minister of Belarus, Alexander Lukashenko, threatened to flood neighboring countries with immigrants.
Lithuania already registered more than 4,124 irregular immigrants during 2021, which is a significantly increased number compared to the 74 immigrants who entered the country during 2020.
Earlier, TheSchengen.com reported that 32 Afghan migrants have now been trapped between the Belarus and Poland borders as Belarusian authorities push them to enter the bloc, while Poland rejects such illegal measures.