2 December 2020, Wednesday, 15:28
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Students Studying in Poland Were Unable to Cross the Border and Return to Belarus

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Students Studying in Poland Were Unable to Cross the Border and Return to Belarus

The journalists found out what happened.

On the evening of October 30, 11 Belarusian students tried to return home through the Brest border crossing, but they were not allowed to enter and were sent back to Poland.

On Friday evening, a message appeared in one of the social networks that young Belarusians studying in Poland were stuck at the border in Brest. One of their parents announced this on his page at about 22.00. The editorial board of Brestskaya Gazeta contacted the resident of Brest.

The man said that his daughter was returning from Poland by minibus from Biala Podlaska and, by that time, had already been standing on the border with Belarus for 5 hours. The passports of the six students who were traveling with her were taken away, and nothing was explained. The young people sat in the minibus and waited to be admitted.

According to the interlocutor, by 23.30, the bus was turned around three times. Parents of students (about 10 people) promptly gathered near the border crossing "Brest" (Warsaw Bridge). They approached the border guards and tried to deal with the situation their children were in. But they did not receive an answer to their questions from the border guards.

The interlocutor explained that four students were dropped off from another bus. Meanwhile, the bus with his daughter was turned around once again. He stood in the neutral zone for several more hours because neither the Belarusian nor the Polish side allowed him to enter.

At 11.56 pm, the official representative of the Brest border group, Siarhei Dzmitryjeu, said in a letter sent to the journalists' e-mail that Poland was refusing entry to Belarusian students.

"On the evening of October 30, a group of Belarusian students returning from Poland wanted to enter the Republic of Belarus. The border guards warned the young people that they will face 10 days of self-isolation. Since the students should have returned to universities on November 4, they were asked to return to the neighboring state. However, the Polish side refused entry to students without giving any reasons. Currently, young people hope to return to their place of study," wrote Siarhei Dzmitryjeu.

Late at night, the father of one of the students told the editorial board that "11 children have returned to Poland."

Dzmitry, one of the seven students who was on this bus, spoke in more detail about this situation.

"On Friday, at about 17.40 Belarusian time, we drove up to the border guards. The border guard asked me where I was coming from and what I was doing in Poland. I answered: "I study there." I was asked for confirmation. I showed my student documents. He had them scanned and said: "Wait." As far as I understand, the guys went through the same procedure. Then we sat in a minibus for about an hour, they approached us and said that they would not let us through due to the epidemiological situation," the student said.

Dzmitry saw other cars with Belarusians entering Belarus. So they returned to the end of the line and tried to cross the border again.

"Our turn came about three hours later, but they didn't let us through again. We said that in the morning there was an article in the media where it was written that Belarusians were allowed through. We were told that it was in the morning, everything is changing," the young man said.

At 00.37, on October 31, he reported that the three people they had put in the passing cars were not allowed to enter Belarus. At this time, the parents about whom we wrote above were waiting on the Belarusian side of the border crossing for students to no avail.

By the way, the official representative of the State Border Committee of Belarus Anton Bychkouski commented on the situation almost exactly as Siarhei Dzmitryjeu did earlier:

"The border guards have warned the young people that they will face 10 days of self-isolation. Since the students should have returned to universities on November 4, they were asked to return to the neighboring state. However, the Polish side refused entry to students without giving any reasons. They are currently trying to enter Poland again."

The student said that he was not asked how long he plans to be in Belarus.

"They did not ask me about how long I plan to be in Belarus. I am going home to take warm clothes and am ready to serve a 10-day quarantine. The guys are too. They are studying remotely and planned to be at home even longer than 10 days," Dzmitry said.

Aliaksandr, another interlocutor, said that the parents were allowed to give food and water to the children. After two nights, the parents realized that their children would not be allowed to enter Belarus. They eventually returned to Poland. True, they returned not seven, but 11.

"While the children were waiting, four more students were put to their minibus, who were not allowed to pass either. Upon returning to Poland, they passed the border without any problems. It so happened that the students who traveled to Belarus from Lublin live in some kind of private dormitory, which was taken "under the covid." At night, upon arrival, they would not even have anywhere to return. Therefore, our people sheltered them in their hostel in Biala Podlaska," said Aliaksandr.

As a reminder, on October 29, it was reported that Belarusians could not return to the country from Poland, Lithuania, Latvia, and Ukraine. The State Border Committee explained that entry from neighboring countries through ground checkpoints is temporarily restricted for a certain category of individuals. The reason is the epidemic situation.

Later, Anton Bychkouski said that Belarusians were allowed into the territory of our country.

"There are restrictions on individuals who arrive and plan to arrive from the territories of our neighboring states. The border guards have the authority to make, among other things, private decisions depending on the situation that develops with those crossing the border," said the representative of the State Civil Code.

There is still no document clarifying the situation at the border.