Poland grants humanitarian visas to 40 Belarusians

Forty Belarusian citizens, persecuted in their country, have been granted humanitarian visas in Poland, a spokesperson for the Border Guard announced on Thursday.

"Belarusians seeking assistance in Poland are being offered aid in this country," Anna Michalska told reporters and repeated that these people had applied for international protection in Poland and had been granted humanitarian visas. She added that they entered Poland on Wednesday.

By the end of October, a total of 1,600 people had been granted international protection in Poland, including 870 Belarusians and 560 Afghan nationals evacuated in August from Afghanistan.

International protection can be granted if applicants are either being persecuted in their homeland or if their life or health are endangered.

Mass-scale protests against President Alexander Lukashenko's regime took place in Belarus after the 2020 presidential election, widely held to have been rigged, and which saw Lukashenko win a sixth term. Thousands of Belarusians have since been arrested and persecuted by the authorities. Some of them have left their homeland in fear of imprisonment.