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    Heightened Vigilance Urged in Poland Amid Concerns of External Influence on Upcoming Elections

    With Poland gearing up for its upcoming parliamentary elections, officials are urging the nation to remain cautious as both Russia and Belarus are expected to closely monitor the campaign, potentially seeking to cast a shadow over the country’s security landscape. Marcin Przydacz, the head of the Polish president’s International Policy Bureau, raised this concern during an interview with Radio Zet earlier this week.

    According to Przydacz, the Ukrainian national news agency, Ukrinform, recently reported statements from Andriy Yusov, a representative of Ukrainian military intelligence. Yusov expressed apprehensions on Monday that Russian mercenaries affiliated with the Wagner Group, currently stationed in Belarus, might exploit their presence to instigate provocations along the borders shared by Poland and the Baltic States.

    Przydacz pointed out that these concerns extend beyond mere speculation, as evidenced by the American embassy’s advisory urging its citizens to exit Belarus and the responsive actions of neighboring countries like Latvia and Lithuania, which have taken the step to seal off their border crossings with Belarus.

    While acknowledging that Poland has already taken measures to restrict border crossings with Belarus, Przydacz emphasized the need for ongoing vigilance. He stated, “Poland has basically already closed the border crossings with Belarus,” but as he added “we must be careful.” He stressed the importance of safeguarding the democratic process, especially during an election campaign, when emotions tend to run high. “In every democracy, this is a vulnerable point when emotions rise,” he added. “Certainly, Russia and Belarus are observing this and will want to negatively affect our sense of security.”

    Poland is scheduled to hold its parliamentary elections on October 15. As the nation prepares to exercise its democratic rights, the call for heightened awareness serves as a reminder that safeguarding the integrity of the electoral process is a collective responsibility.”

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