Tensions increase between Poland and Belarus, a close ally of Russia, also involving road haulage. From midnight on Thursday 1 June 2023 and until further notice, Warsaw has banned the transit across the border with Belarus for trucks, tractors, trailers, semi-trailers and combined vehicles registered in Russian and Belarusian territory, even if they are towed by a tractor unit with a Polish license plate.
The provision was introduced by Polish Interior Minister Mariusz Kamiński in response to the confirmation of the eight-year prison sentence imposed by the Belarusian Supreme Court on Andrzej Poczobut, a well-known journalist and activist whom Poland and the most important human rights organizations consider detained unfairly.
A first customs crossing, the one between Kuzmic and Bobrowniki, had already been closed on 18 February 2023 against the arrest and the Belarusian regime, in response, had introduced restrictions to prevent Polish carriers from using the border crossings in the border section between Belarus, Lithuania and Latvia. The rumor of an imminent sanction had already spread for several days between the carriers of Minsk and Moscow and since Monday more than 900 trucks leaving Poland have been stuck at the border.
The companies involved are now busy searching for new routes, mostly through the Baltic countries, in order to continue operating between the EU and the Russian Federation, which has instead declared that it is not worried by the blockage of transit.
The ban introduced by Warsaw, it should be remembered, is only the latest act of a hybrid war closely linked to the conflict in Ukraine. In recent days, work has been completed for the electrification of over 200 kilometers of the border between Poland and Belarus, the scene of a strong flow of migrants in the last year.