Opposition MP says migrant crisis could have been dealt with more humanely
An opposition MP said on Monday the that he believes Poland could have acted "more humanely" when it came to the treatment of migrants on the Polish-Belarusian border.
Their treatment has become a talking point in Poland owing to a broadside of government criticism aimed at Green Border, a new film by acclaimed director Agnieszka Holland.
The fictional film about a group of migrants trapped on the border shows heartless Polish border guards pushing them back into Belarus, apparently indifferent to their suffering.
Members of the government have called the film an insult to the Border Guard.
The government has also made border security a priority in order to avoid a repeat of the 2021 migrant crisis that saw hundreds of people trying to get into Poland from Belarus.
During the crisis a number of people became trapped on the border, and there were a handful of deaths.
"There weren't huge numbers of children and women," Jerzy Borowczak, an MP from the Civic Coalition, the largest opposition grouping, told Polish Radio 1.
"Although we could have made a decision to let the children in, for example, so that they wouldn't lie in the forest, so that they wouldn't die there, so that women in childbirth wouldn't die in these bushes on the Belarusian side or just beyond the Polish border.
"I believe that we could have behaved more humanely."
Asked whether migrants on the border should be allowed in he said: "I believe that everyone can be checked in terms of the state's capabilities. I'm not saying a 1,000 in one day, but 100 people, 20 people, and if they are not fleeing from war, but it is economic emigration - then we should send them back. It would be cheaper to send these people back to Nigeria or to whichever country they came from, than to build walls and engage hundreds of thousands of people to protect the border."