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World: Iraqi Infant Buried Without His Parents Present Latest Death in Poland-Belarus Standoff

Tension mounts as soldiers and migrants mass at Belarus-Poland border

  Tension mounts as soldiers and migrants mass at Belarus-Poland border Belarus's Russian-backed leader insists he's "not seeking a fight," but Polish and European leaders accuse him of mounting a "hybrid attack," using innocent migrants as a weapon.There were unconfirmed reports of gunfire on Tuesday as tension soared in the months-long crisis between Russia-aligned Belarus, and EU and NATO member Poland. Military forces have entrenched on both sides of the border, and migrants desperate to reach EU soil are caught in the middle, in dire conditions.

A one-year-old child from Syria has died in a forest in Poland near the border with Belarus , according to Polish medical workers, becoming the youngest known victim of the crisis on the eastern edge of the European Union. Thousands of people attempting to reach the EU are still stranded in freezing conditions, amid a standoff between the bloc and Belarus , which has been accused of deliberately creating the crisis by flying in people from the Middle East and facilitating their travel to the border.

Belarus, Poland and Lithuania refuse to let the world see the migrant standoff up close. Migrants, often assisted by travel agents, are flown to Belarus before being escorted to border. Iraqi migrants say they face beatings on both sides of the Belarusian border. Why some Middle Easterners are gambling all they have to reach Europe. With thousands of people camped in the cold at the Poland - Belarus border, Western officials accuse Belarus’s repressive ruler of trying to manufacture a migrant crisis in Europe in retaliation for sanctions against his country, creating a new flashpoint in East-West relations.

An unborn Iraqi baby is the latest life claimed by the migrant crisis at the Poland-Belarus border.

An unborn child is the latest life claimed as thousands of migrants from the Middle East have sought to enter the European Union but found their path cut off by a military build-up and fast approaching winter in the forests of Poland and Belarus. Above, a Polish imam, left, and two other members of a Muslim community bury the tiny white casket of an unborn Iraqi boy, in Bohoniki, Poland, on Tuesday Nov. 23. © Czarek Sokolowski/AP Photo An unborn child is the latest life claimed as thousands of migrants from the Middle East have sought to enter the European Union but found their path cut off by a military build-up and fast approaching winter in the forests of Poland and Belarus. Above, a Polish imam, left, and two other members of a Muslim community bury the tiny white casket of an unborn Iraqi boy, in Bohoniki, Poland, on Tuesday Nov. 23.

Aleksander Ali Bazarewicz, a Polish imam, recited prayers Tuesday over the infant's tiny white casket. According to the Associated Press, the mother miscarried and is hospitalized in serious condition, and the father was at the refugee center and did not attend the funeral.

Poland says Belarus is taking away migrants at border camp

  Poland says Belarus is taking away migrants at border camp WARSAW, Poland (AP) — A Polish government official said Wednesday that migrants who have spent days in a makeshift camp on the Belarusian side of Poland's eastern border are being taken away by bus by Belarusian officials. Since Nov. 8 a large group of people from the Middle East has been stuck at a border crossing with Poland, hoping to enter Europe. Most are fleeing conflict or hopelessness at home and aim to reach Germany or other western European countries. © Provided by Associated Press Migrants settle for the night in the logistics center in the checkpoint "Kuznitsa" at the Belarus-Poland border near Grodno, Belarus, on Tuesday, Nov. 16, 2021.

Belarus denies this, accusing Europe of denying them safe passage. Thousands of people, mostly from the Middle East, have attempted the trip since Lukashenko announced in May that he was relaxing border controls against migrants heading to the West. The move followed EU sanctions for its harsh The circumstances of the border standoff that led to Gaylan’s death are unclear, but his father, Delir Ismael Mahmoud, blamed Poland , even though the large build-up of security forces only started a few days after his death . “Unfortunately, the Polish police – instead of helping them – started to deport

In his barber shop in the Esyan camp in northern Iraq , Sabah Sahdun has a steady stream of customers. He trims beards and cuts hair for some of the thousands of displaced Iraqis who live here, but in the past two months he says he's been hearing something new from his clientele of mostly Belarus says the new visa rules foster tourism, but Lukashenko has also said his country would no longer be co-operating with the EU to stem migration. "If some think that we will close our borders with Poland , Lithuania, Latvia and Ukraine and become a camp for people fleeing Afghanistan, Iran, Iraq

Bazarewicz also led prayers nine days ago for the first victim of the migration to be buried in the same cemetery, a 19-year-old Syrian refugee.

"We thought this would only happen once but now this sector gets bigger and bigger," he told the AP.

The baby, along with three others, are now buried at Poland's largest Muslim cemetery in Bohoniki, which belongs to a community of Tartars.

There is no exact death toll in the weeks since migrants gathered in large numbers at Belarus' borders with European Union countries, a situation the EU said was orchestrated by the Belarusian government.

The Polish Border Guard has reported about 10 deaths since September, though humanitarian groups and Polish media have reported more.

Belarus Border Camp Emptied, Hundreds of Migrants Flown Back to Iraq

  Belarus Border Camp Emptied, Hundreds of Migrants Flown Back to Iraq Belarusian authorities said that as many as 7,000 migrants remain in the country after more than a week of tensions between it, the migrants and Poland.Belarusian media reported that no more migrants were seen in the makeshift camps. The migrants were either put on flights back to their home countries or allegedly placed in a heated warehouse to protect them from the cold weather.

Ahmad and a young Iraqi Kurd died in late October as the two men attempted to cross an icy tributary to the Bug River, which makes up part of the border. Numerous reports suggested that Belarusian border guards had forced migrants to cross fences, forest areas, and swamps along Polish border guards have used water canons in the cold weather to keep people from the border. Public opinion in Poland , however, is divided on how to address the people attempting to cross the border from Belarus . A recent poll indicated that while more than 50% of respondents think pushbacks are the right thing to

A Polish soldier has died at the country’s eastern border with Belarus , Poland ’s military has confirmed, adding that his death was a result of an “accident” and that “no third parties” were involved. The incident comes amid increased tensions along the border between Poland and Belarus that prompted Warsaw to beef up border security there, because of an influx of migrants the EU blames on Minsk’s “hybrid war” policies encouraging migrants to take a new route to Europe through the Belarusian territory.

Bazarewicz told the AP that while he doesn't know much about the family, he believes it's his duty as a Muslim to ensure the baby and all victims of the crisis be buried with the proper religious rites. In Islam, a fetus older than four months is considered a human and buried as one.

"These people have left their countries, not to travel around or see beautiful places, though Poland is beautiful, but to find a better life," Bazarewicz said. "They were manipulated and they've suffered—which is not their fault."

For more reporting from the Associated Press, see below:

The EU considers the migration "hybrid warfare" waged by the authoritarian government of Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko. Poland has ordered a state of emergency along its border to stop migrants from coming through, and to keep family—or smugglers—from approaching the border to facilitate their travel further west. Most aim to reach Germany or elsewhere in Western Europe, in some cases to be reunited with relatives.

Ukraine Spending $640 Million to Build Fence Along Russian, Belarusian Borders

  Ukraine Spending $640 Million to Build Fence Along Russian, Belarusian Borders In response to the recent migrant buildup in Belarus, Ukraine will build a fence along its borders with Belarus and Russia to keep migrants out.Ukrainian Minister of Internal Affairs Denys Monastyrskiy said funds for the fence should be gathered next year, with the project's cost being an estimated 17 billion hryvnas, or $640 million.

Hundreds of migrants break through Belarusian border fence in latest flashpoint at the Polish A spokesman said: ‘Refugees are freezing to death in the forest. The EU says that the authoritarian Belarusian regime has for months invited migrants to Minsk, many of them Iraqis and Syrians, with Share or comment on this article: Poland - Belarus migrant crisis: Hundreds of migrants break through

As Poland has built up its military presence in the area, many migrants have become trapped in the forest, pushed back and forth between Belarusian and Polish forces.

There also have been migrant deaths on the Belarusian side, with bodies returned to Iraq for burial, but the Minsk authorities haven't reported how many.

A man who appeared to be a migrant from Africa was buried Monday in the Catholic cemetery of Sokolka, not far from the Muslim cemetery in Bohoniki, because a Bible was found next to his body. But since there was no certainty that he was Christian, the local priest didn't preside and all those attending the burial were journalists.

Polish media have also reported the death of a 24-year-old Syrian Christian man whom they identified as Issa Jerjos.

Bazarewicz led the rites for a family he had never met, admitting he knew little more than the mother miscarried in her 27th week of pregnancy and that the family had five children. He called in two Muslims, both Chechen immigrants, to assist with the funeral, attended otherwise only by about three dozen journalists.

Poland: Belarus eyes using Afghan migrants as border pawns

  Poland: Belarus eyes using Afghan migrants as border pawns VILNIUS, Lithuania (AP) — Poland’s leader on Sunday warned against more possible migrant pressures on the European Union’s border with Belarus, this time coming from Afghanistan and Uzbekistan. Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki spoke in Vilnius following talks with Lithuanian Prime Minister Ingrida Simonyte about ways of solving the “very difficult situation” at the borders of EU members with Belarus. He was on a one-day tour of meetings with the prime ministers of EU members Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia, which have also been hit by the migrant pressures.

The lace-trimmed casket of the unborn infant—given the name Halikari Dhaker and whose date of death is November 14—was so small it was carried to the grave by a single man before it was lowered with ropes.

Four people who lost their lives to the migrant crisis on the Belarusian-Polish border are buried in Poland's largest Muslim cemetery. Above, two members of a Muslim community bury the tiny white casket of an unborn Iraqi boy, in Bohoniki, Poland, on Tuesday Nov. 23. Czarek Sokolowski/AP Photo © Czarek Sokolowski/AP Photo Four people who lost their lives to the migrant crisis on the Belarusian-Polish border are buried in Poland's largest Muslim cemetery. Above, two members of a Muslim community bury the tiny white casket of an unborn Iraqi boy, in Bohoniki, Poland, on Tuesday Nov. 23. Czarek Sokolowski/AP Photo

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EU Eyes Sanctions for Airlines, Tourism Companies Aiding Migrants Entrance to Belarus .
The sanctions are expected to be approved by EU leaders in the coming days.The EU is planning to target airlines and travel groups in the sanctions, which come after the organization accused Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko of purposefully using migrants to destabilize neighboring countries. According to a draft of the sanction obtained by the Associated Press, the affected companies are being accused of helping Belarus bring migrants to the country. From there, the migrants would be encouraged by the country to cross international borders into Poland, Latvia, and Lithuania.

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