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Illegal migrants attempt to get into EU using World Cup FAN IDs

Society 20.06.2018 | 15:35
An archive photo
An archive photo

MINSK, 20 June (BelTA) - Illegal migrants make attempts to get into the European Union using 2018 World Cup FAN IDs, Aleksei Sytenkov, the deputy head of preliminary investigations and legal support to operational activities of the Belarusian State Border Committee, told the media on 20 June, BelTA has learned.

The situation with illegal border crossing is tense yet under control. “The workload on the border service has increased due to the FIFA World Cup in Russia. We fulfill the obligations to protect the border of the Union State. Russia has allowed crossing the border on the FAN IDs but unfortunately it allows entering the European Union too,” Aleksei Sytenkov said.

He cited the incident that happened on the night of 20 June on the border section of the Smorgon border group when four citizens of Morocco were detained. Citizens of that country had made such attempts shortly before too. Prior to this, citizens of Pakistan were detained attempting to cross into Poland.

Belarus and Russia signed an intergovernmental agreement on the rules of entry of foreign nationals and stateless persons attending international sport events. In line with the document foreign fans will be able to travel through Belarus visa-free during the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia from 4 June to 25 July.

In general, most often it is Vietnamese citizens who make attempts to cross the border illegally: they arrive in Moscow, organize a group and move towards the border with Poland, Latvia, Lithuania where they are detained. “There is hardly a week when we do not detain a group of illegal migrants on the ‘green border'. At checkpoints we often detain individuals carrying fake and forged documents,” Alexei Sytenkov said. Attempts to hide in vehicles are also many.

In 2017 Belarus detained about 900 people trying or planning to illegally cross the state border.

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