Poland-Belarus border: “We don’t want people to die in the freezing forest”


How has your life changed since the start of the crisis?

“At first we just heard of people crossing the border and saw pictures because people couldn’t cross our area because there are swamps everywhere. But I’m afraid there are bodies in these swamps.

“Then the state of emergency was declared. I live outside the area but nearby, so I have passed through the area several times. For my friends who live inside the area, I think it’s much more difficult because they meet armed soldiers all the time.Children are often scared.


“Our life has changed in many ways: restless nights, nervous tension, fear that helping refugees will be seen as involvement in human trafficking and smuggling, fear that right-wing circles may take revenge on people who help them.

“Freedom of movement has been restricted and tourism is impossible. Despite everything, we grew close in our immediate family. We talk about it a lot and I get a lot of anger about it. I take charge of my thoughts, but I have the support of my wife and our eldest son.


“It’s a depressing situation; we must remember to carry all our documents, even when walking the dog. Every hotel, hostel, guest room – everything is occupied by the military services. The fact that you cannot invite guests, family or friends here also makes it difficult. It’s hard when you’re separated from the rest of the country.



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