Ukrainians and Georgians dominate people smuggling trade into Poland

Hundreds of thousands of Ukrainians have legally migrated into Poland, but some Ukrainians are also fueling illegal immigration

editor: REMIX NEWS
author: Grzegorz Adamczyk
Polish police officers and military staff control cars near the Polish-Belarusian border, which was closed because of a large group of migrants camping in the area on the Belarus side who had tried to illegally push their way into Poland and into the European Union, near Sokolka, Poland, Saturday, Nov. 13, 2021. (AP Photo/Matthias Schrader)

As Poland continues to struggle with migrants flowing into the country, the biggest traffickers appear to be Ukrainians and Georgians, who are often smuggling other nationalities into the country.

According to data supplied to the Kresy.pl portal by the border authority, legal migration of Ukrainians and Georgians is stimulating illegal migration. In 2022, foreign nationals were assisting illegal crossings by migrants in 90 percent of cases. In terms of the nationalities involved in these smuggling activities, Ukrainians and Georgians dominate, according to Polish news outlet Kresy.pl.

This is a repetition of a pattern established in earlier years. In 2021, the number of foreign subjects stopped for people smuggling was also 90 percent, and Georgians and Ukrainians were prevalent in the statistics.

Foreigners also dominate the statistics for those issued arrest warrants in connection to the trafficking of migrants. Back in 2021, the figure for arrest warrants issued against foreign citizens for this crime was 70 percent. 

Although Poland has erected a border fence, stepped up border controls, and enacted emergency decrees, illegal migration problems still exist.

Over the weekend, the Polish Border Guard Authority reported that it managed to detain five people engaged in trafficking migrants across Poland’s border with Belarus. Three of the individuals involved were Ukrainian citizens, one was a Belarusian national, and there was also one Pole.

The border authority also reported that in the preceding 24-hour period, there had been 81 illegal crossing attempts at the Poland-Belarus border. A day earlier, there had been 92 attempts at illegal crossings, and one courier for people traffickers was also stopped. 

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