Poland has initiated border controls with its neighboring country, Slovakia, citing security concerns and the need to curb illegal migration. This decision was announced by Rafał Bochenek, the spokesperson for Poland’s ruling party, Law and Justice (PiS), during an interview with the state-owned TVP television network.
Bochenek revealed that the Polish government is actively considering the possibility of extending border controls to other neighboring nations, including Germany. He emphasized that monitoring efforts are already underway along the western border, with discussions ongoing about the potential restoration of control measures.
The spokesperson pointed to the escalating issue of illegal migration as a primary driver behind these actions. Bochenek cited alarming statistics, noting that Germany had accepted approximately 100,000 illegal migrants the previous year, with nearly 70,000 more arriving in the current year. This influx has raised concerns in both Poland and Germany.
Germany, despite being part of the border-free Schengen zone along with Poland, has also expressed apprehensions about the unchecked flow of migrants across its eastern borders. Berlin has been particularly worried about increasing numbers of migrants entering Germany after transiting through Poland and the Czech Republic.
However, Bochenek underscored that Poland has its own concerns regarding migrants traveling from Germany into its territory. He raised the possibility of some individuals intending to enter Poland with the intent to commit crimes, thefts, or other illegal activities. The spokesperson stressed that the safety of Polish citizens remains a top priority for the government.
This move by Poland aligns with the ongoing discourse within the PiS party, which has consistently voiced concerns about the potential criminal implications of migrant presence in Western Europe. Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki has previously criticized Western nations for allowing migrants to intimidate local populations.
Bochenek also suggested that Chancellor Scholz of Germany might be using the migration issue as a political strategy. He claimed that Scholz was attempting to divert attention away from Germany’s own challenges with illegal migration. Bochenek asserted that Scholz’s declining popularity in polls, coupled with the rise of the far-right AfD party, was prompting the Chancellor to adopt a quasi-migrant narrative.
In response to the situation, Prime Minister Morawiecki disclosed that he had instructed the interior minister to implement checks on buses and cars at the Polish-Slovak border. These measures aim to prevent migrants without proper authorization from entering Poland, further highlighting the government’s commitment to safeguarding the nation’s security.