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09 December 2021, 17:23

Kochanova: Only Belarus has been helping refugees stranded on border with EU

GRODNO, 9 December (BelTA) - Only Belarus has been helping refugees. The countries that are responsible for this situation prefer to remain silent, Chairwoman of the Council of the Republic Natalya Kochanova told the media as she visited the temporary accommodation center for refugees in the Bruzgi transport and logistics center on 9 December, BelTA has learned.

During the visit to the transport and logistics, Natalya Kochanova inspected the accommodation conditions and the way food provision and medical assistance have been organized. She also talked with refugees, gave the children sweet boxes and toys on behalf of the upper house of the Belarusian Parliament.

"My heart breaks for children. I feel very sorry for them, because this situation is not their fault. I can't understand the leaders of the countries that allowed this to happen. What does it take to set up a humanitarian corridor and let these people in? It is only Belarus that has been helping these people. We provide them with food, essentials, help those who want to return home," Natalya Kochanova noted. She recalled that the president instructed the Council of the Republic to supervise food provision and assistance for the people stranded on the border. Representatives of the Council of the Republic work here on a regular basis.

During the conversation with Natalya Kochanova, the refugees repeatedly thanked Belarus for help and support, for the roof over their heads. This is especially important, said one of the refugees, now that winter has come. It is very cold outside.

"The leaders of those countries that invited refugees should see this. They should come and look in the eyes of these women and children. Is this situation normal for the 21st century? Why don't they let these people in? Many people said today again that they do not want to return home, but want to go where they were invited, to reunite with their families and friends," Natalya Kochanova said. She stressed that the Belarusian side will continue to do everything to help these people.

Belarusian senators have repeatedly addressed the international community, MEPs. "But they don't hear us. I wish one of them would come and look in the eyes of these suffering people," said the speaker of the upper house of the Belarusian Parliament. According to her, people are waiting and hoping for the positive outcome and therefore they are still staying here, on the border.

Belarus is ready to accept those refugees who would like to stay. "If people want to live and work here, then, I think, this issue is solvable," Natalya Kochanova said. She drew attention to the fact that Belarus has always treated refugees kindly. Not long ago Belarus accepted more than 160,000 Ukrainians and gave them citizenship.

On 9 December Natalya Kochanova visited the border guards outpost Podlipki of the Grodno Border Guards Group. She got acquainted with the life and service of military personnel. The outpost provides protection of 13km of the Belarusian-Polish border. The parliament speaker talked with the personnel of the outpost and thanked them for their service. "You're on the front line. Peace in the country depends on you," Natalya Kochanova emphasized.

She gave the military personnel New Year's gifts on behalf of the Council of the Republic. In addition, the Grodno Border Guards Group was awarded a letter of commendation from the Council of the Republic.

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