Lukashenko: ‘Absolutely Possible’ Belarus Forces Undermining EU Border – ‘I Won’t Even Look into This’

Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko (R) watches Independence Day parade in Minsk, on July 3, 2013. Belarus celebrated today Independence Day, an official holiday marking the day in 1944 when the Red Army liberated Minsk from Nazi troops during the World War II. AFP PHOTO / BELTA / POOL/ NIKOLAI PETROV …
NIKOLAI PETROV/AFP via Getty Images

Belarusian leader Alexander Lukashenko has told the BBC that it is “absolutely possible” that his forces are helping Middle Eastern migrants break through the eastern borders of the EU and NATO, and that he will not be looking into it.

“Our guys are helping the migrants get into Polish territory? It’s perfectly possible, I think that’s absolutely possible. Maybe someone helped them. I won’t even look into this,” he told BBC correspondent Steve Rosenberg.

“We’re Slavs. We have hearts. Our troops know the migrants are going to Germany,” Lukashenko said, suggesting if any soldiers were helping to violate Poland’s borders they would be ‘Good Samaritans’ acting out of compassion, rather than state agents acting at his regime’s behest to undermine a geopolitical rival.

“I told the EU I’m not going to detain migrants on the border, hold them at the border, and if they keep coming from now on I still won’t stop them, because they’re not coming to my country, they’re going to yours,” he explained.

“The West stopped talking to us and working with us. If you don’t want to, then fine. We’ll sort this problem out ourselves, as best we can.”

Lukashenko went on to deny the accusations that his regime has manufactured the migrant crisis, claiming that he “didn’t invite them here”, adding: “To be honest, I don’t want them to go through Belarus.”

Poland, Latvia, Lithuania, and officials from the EU and NATO all believe that the border crisis has been deliberately engineered by Lukashenko as a form of “hybrid warfare” against them through trafficking migrants on passenger jets from the Middle East to Minsk and ultimately to the EU frontier.

Lukashenko also addressed questions from his BBC interlocutor about the alleged beating of protesters in a detention centre, making a perhaps surprising admission that the claims are true.

“OK, OK, I admit it, I admit it. People were beaten,” he conceded nonchalantly — going on to justify the violence by saying: “But there were police beaten up too and you didn’t show this.”

Lukashenko was similarly blunt when asked about the fact that close to 300 NGOs have been shut down in Belarus since July.

“I’ll answer your question with no bother: we’ll massacre all the scum that you, the West, have been financing,” he declared, adding contemptuously: “Oh, you’re upset that we destroyed all your structures. Your NGOs, and all those you’ve been paying for.”

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