Czech PM to ask parliament to send 150 troops to Poland

Andrej Babis, the Czech prime minister, has said he will ask both houses of the country's parliament to rubber stamp the sending of 150 soldiers to Poland's border region with Belarus owing to the migration crisis.

Babis, who is ending his term of office soon, will send the requests for a 180-day expedition on Wednesday.

Under the Czech constitution, both houses of the country's parliament must approve the deployment of Czech troops abroad.

The Czech soldiers are supposed to help their Polish colleagues and Border Guard in protecting the border, but will not carry out any tasks directly related to migrants, Babis said.

According to earlier unofficial reports, the Czech Republic is planning to send engineers and logistics troops to Poland.

On Tuesday, the Czech lower house's foreign affairs committee condemned the Belarusian government of Alexander Lukashenko for its attempts to destabilise Poland, Latvia, Lithuania and the entire European Union by instigating a migration crisis on their borders with Belarus.

The Czech MPs called upon the government to ensure a maximum diplomatic, material and - where necessary - military support for the Polish government in its efforts to protect the EU's external borders.

Poland has been struggling to stem a wave of migrants, mainly from the Middle East in Africa, who had been invited to Belarus by Lukashenko under a false promise of easy access to the EU. The migration crisis has been Lukashenko's retaliation for sanctions that Brussels imposed on Minsk for suppressing the Belarusian opposition, the Polish minority and abuse of human rights.