MINSK, 25 November (BelTA) – Belarus will do everything to help refugees who found themselves in dire straits, but political decisions of the West are also needed, Chair of the Council of the Republic of the National Assembly Natalya Kochanova told reporters on 25 November, BelTA has learned.
“The refugees stranded on the Belarus-Poland border need help and support. Today, it looks like no one really cares about them. In fact, despite the visits of representatives of international organizations, no decisions have been made yet. Of course, we continue providing food, accommodation, warm clothing, and much-needed medical assistance to refugees. We do not divide people into ours and others, and if someone needs help, we will always lend a helping hand. The president says it too. Indeed, people are at the core of our state policy,” Natalya Kochanova said.
The speaker noted that during the last visit to Belarus, WHO Regional Director for Europe Hans Kluge gave a strong approval of the healthcare system in Belarus. "Our doctors are doing a great job in the situation with refugees. They provide medical care, examine people who seek medical attention, and, if necessary, prescribe treatment in hospitals. We also offered a vaccination opportunity for the people currently living in the transport and logistics center. Once again, our healthcare system has shown its viability as a systemically working mechanism," she stressed.
"We will do everything to help these people. However, political decisions are needed to resolve their situation. We understand that it will not go away on its own. If refugees want to return to their homeland, we are ready to assist them. However, these people say they are determined to reach the countries where their families live, the countries that invited them. For the third week they have been living in an uncertainty, and, in my opinion, it is time for the West to start addressing this problem," the speaker said.
Natalya Kochanova recalled the words the head of state said in his interview to the British media company BBC. “When the conflict in Ukraine broke out, we received 160,000 refugees and provided them with the same conditions the Belarusian citizens have, provided them with jobs and housing. Many people decided to stay in our country and they live here today. People from the Middle East, for various reasons, want to get to the European Union. There are whole families on the Belarusian-Polish border, some of them seek advanced high-tech medical care in Europe. These refugees need a humanitarian corridor. They need to be given what they want, i.e. the opportunity to go to the country they intend to reach. Don't people have the right to decide what to do with their lives today? Of course, they do,” she said.