Fence on Belarus border in progress - MoD

Michał Onufryjuk/PAP

The Polish army has completed the construction of an 80-kilometre section of a barbed-wire fence along its border with Belarus, the defence minister said on Sunday.

The project is designed to protect both Poland and the European Union against illegal migration.

"Eighty kilometres of a 2.5-metre-high fence have already been built, and more than 130 kilometres of military barriers have been laid," Mariusz Blaszczak said on Sunday in Olsztyn, north-eastern Poland.

He added that a net is also being added to protect animals from being injured on both sides of the fence.

In recent weeks Poland, Lithuania and Latvia have observed increasing numbers of migrants crossing into their territories from Belarus. The three countries have accused Belarus of deliberately sending migrants to their borders in an effort to destabilise the EU.

On August 25, the Polish army began the construction of barbed-wire fencing on the Polish-Belarusian border designed to keep illegal migrants out of Poland. Ultimately, it will secure the country's land border sections. The construction of a 150-kilometre-long stretch of the fence is planned at the first stage. The next stage will involve the building of a further 97 kilometres of fencing.

On September 2, Poland declared a 30-day state of emergency in the regions bordering Belarus to stem a migration crisis. The emergency laws will cover 183 localities in the border zone including in the vicinity of the village of Usnarz Gorny where, on the Belarusian side of the Polish-Belarusian border, a group of migrants have been trapped for over a month.