Poles block another checkpoint: the situation on the Ukrainian border

Volodymyr PaziyNews
Poles block the border of Ukraine
Poles block the border of Ukraine

On February 13, Polish farmers expanded their border blockade, blocking Korczowa-Krakowiec border crossing too. The protest near this checkpoint began in the middle of the day after the protesting farmers had already blocked the Zosin-Ustyluh, Dovhobychuv-Uhryniv, Medyka-Shehyni, Yahodyn-Dorohusk, and Hrebenne-Rawa Ruska border crossings.

"Around 14:00, Polish farmers started a protest near the Korczowa checkpoint, opposite the Ukrainian Krakowiec checkpoint. According to information from Polish colleagues, they intend to block the movement of trucks heading to Ukraine," the State Border Guard Service of Ukraine (SBGS) said.

As of Tuesday morning, February 13, about 1,250 trucks were queuing at the border between Ukraine and Poland. Most of them were opposite Yahodyn and Rawa-Ruska.

"These are the trucks on the territory of Poland that are waiting to cross the border towards Ukraine," Andrii Demchenko, a spokesman for the State Border Guard Service of Ukraine, said during a national TV marathon.

According to him, only a small number of trucks are allowed to cross the border. "In an hour, 1-3 trucks can cross in each direction: both towards Poland and out of the country. It all depends on the organizers and participants, their desire to let trucks through. Traffic for other categories of vehicles is not blocked," he said.

The best situation is at the Ustyluh and Uhryniv directions, where there are practically no queues. However, each direction has its own peculiarities: trucks weighing more than 7.5 tons, i.e. large trucks, can cross the border only in some places," Demchenko added. For example, smaller trucks or empty trucks weighing more than 7.5 tons can cross the border at Ustyluh and Uhryniv.

What preceded this and who is blocking the border?

Yesterday, February 12, Polish farmers expanded their blockade of the Ukrainian border. Pro-Russian forces supported by politicians from the marginal Confederation party are believed to be behind the strike with discriminatory demands for Ukraine and the destruction of grain.

"The Confederation opposes European values, supports Poland's withdrawal from the European Union (EU) and active cooperation with Russia. It is also worth considering that the European market receives three times more grain from Russia than from Ukraine. The protesters do not even mention this.

One of the key organizers of the protest, Rafał Mekler, is also the leader of the far-right Ukrainophobic party Ruch Narodowy. Mekler and his partners have been telling Poles about "Washington's plans," "the destructive influence of the EU," and so on for years. Mekler owns the logistics company Rafał Mekler TRANSPORT, which delivered goods to Russia. Since the fall of 2023, he has been personally attending protests on the border of Ukraine and actively promoting his ideas on social media.

Rafał Mekler rejoices as farmers pour Ukrainian grain on the road

After the incident with the illegal unloading of trucks and damage to grain, Polish customs stopped releasing trucks with such cargo. The country's authorities also decided to tighten control over Ukrainian grain. In Ukraine, the Polish protest is no longer perceived as a peaceful action.

As previously reported, the EU will not introduce quotas for some Ukrainian products as the EC refused Poland's request. Moreover, the EC is preparing a draft decision to extend duty-free trade with Ukraine. It is expected that this regime will be in effect at least until June 2025.

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