Many migrants are detained
Frontex protects the Russian-Finnish border
December 7, 2023, 8:04 pm
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After the closure of Finnish border crossings with Russia, 55 Frontex officers are to step up surveillance. The BBC reports that Russia is now recruiting stranded migrants from Somalia and Iraq to fight in Ukraine.
55 officers sent by EU border security agency Frontex have arrived at Finland’s border with Russia. Most of them are tasked with monitoring the border with Russia, Frontex spokesman Piotr Switalski explained in the evening. The deployment is initially planned for the end of January, but this period can be changed “as needed”. Frontex announced the deployment of border guards to Finland at the end of November. In recent months, Finnish authorities have registered the arrival of around 1,000 migrants from the Middle East and Africa – primarily Iraq, Yemen and Somalia – on Russia’s eastern border.
The government in Helsinki accuses Russia of smuggling undocumented migrants across the border to destabilize Finland, which has been a member of NATO since April. The EU Commission spoke of the “shameful instrumentalisation” of migrants by Moscow. Frontex spokesman Svitalski said: “We know that migration pressure is one of the tools used by the Kremlin, so we can expect this to continue.”
Regarding the current situation on the Finnish-Russian border, Finnish border guard Wille Joskit told AFP news agency that there were still “large groups of migrants from third countries” in the area near the border. Although some of them have moved to other parts of Russia in the past few days, the current situation in the border region will last “for a long time”.
Russia Sends Migrants to Ukraine Frontline
According to one BBC report After closing its borders with Finland, Russian authorities began arresting migrants to recruit them for the war against Ukraine. According to the broadcaster, the pretext for the arrest was that the Russian visas had expired. Human rights activists have told the BBC of several cases of refugees from Iraq and Somalia being recruited into the war. According to them, the Russian authorities managed to recruit dozens of foreigners.
Finland closed all eight border crossings with Russia by the end of November in response to the growing number of arriving migrants. Russia and Finland share a land border of about 1,300 kilometers. Relations between the two countries have deteriorated significantly since Russia’s war of aggression against Ukraine began in February 2022.
In April, Finland joined NATO after decades of alliance neutrality. Moscow condemned joining the military alliance as an “attack on Russia’s security” and announced “countermeasures”.
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