Su, 1.10.2023

Estonia to send assistance to Latvia to help prevent irregular migration

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A member of the State Border Guard (SBG) patrols along the fence at the Latvia-Belarus border near Krivanda, Eastern Latvia on August 8, 2023.
A member of the State Border Guard (SBG) patrols along the fence at the Latvia-Belarus border near Krivanda, Eastern Latvia on August 8, 2023. Photo: GINTS IVUSKANS / AFP / SCANPIX

Estonia is sending support to Latvia to combat irregular migration at the border, according to Minister of the Interior Lauri Laanemets.

Laanemets stated that there has been a large number of irregular border crossings on the Latvia-Belarus border in recent weeks.

«Belarus is testing the capabilities of its neighboring countries, these are also hybrid attacks,» the Estonian minister said at a government press briefing on Thursday.

Laanemets said that the situation is tense; for example, on Monday, Latvian border guards thwarted 103 people's attempts to cross the border, and 70 on Tuesday.

«The Latvians have approached Estonia asking for help, and we have decided to send forces from Estonia to assist at the Latvian border. The Police and Border Guard Board is currently preparing a unit of 10-20 people under the auspices of ESTPOL-8 to assist the Latvians primarily in border patrols but also in mass control capabilities,» Laanemets said.

Estonia is prepared to help the Latvians for as long as necessary, meaning that there is readiness to rotate the teams.

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