Lukashenko of Belarus ready to stop Russian energy flows if Poland closes border -RIA


Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko addresses migrants as he visits the Bruzgi Transport and Logistics Center on the Belarusian-Polish border in Grodno region, Belarus, November 26, 2021. REUTERS / Kacper Pempel

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MOSCOW, December 1 (Reuters) – Belarusian leader Alexander Lukashenko has said he is ready to suspend Russian energy flows if Poland closes its border with Belarus, Russian news agency RIA reported on Wednesday, stoking tensions between countries on migration.

Belarus is stuck in a row with the European Union over migrants camped on its western border. The EU accused Belarus of airlifting thousands of people from the Middle East and pushing them into the bloc via Poland, Lithuania and Latvia. Belarus denies it.

Separately, on Wednesday the Polish defense minister said the Belarusian defense attaché was summoned after fires set up by Polish soldiers near the town of Terespol were damaged by air gun fire .

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“The provocations of the Belarusian services are absolutely unacceptable,” wrote Mariusz Blaszczak on Twitter.

A spokesperson for the Belarusian Foreign Ministry was not immediately available for comment.

Polish President Andrzej Duda on Tuesday promulgated new regulations allowing the government to limit access to border areas with Belarus. The law came into force on Wednesday, replacing the state of emergency which expired at midnight on Tuesday. Read more

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Reporting by Maria Kiselyova in Moscow, Alan Charlish in Warsaw, Pavel Polityuk; Writing by Alexander Marrow; Editing by Andrew Heavens and Alex Richardson

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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