The European Union "unanimously" condemns Belarus' decision to allow illegal immigrants to enter Lithuania in retaliation for European sanctions, European Council President Charles Michel said on Monday.
The Lithuanian government declared a state of emergency across its territory on Friday, as the flow of - mainly Iraqi - migrants from Belarus reached an average of 150 per day; this is an average higher than the annual number of migrants Vilnius for the past three years.
"My colleagues at the European Council make it clear that (…) the Belarusian authorities are using illegal immigration to try to put pressure on the EU, including Lithuania," Michel said during a joint press conference with the Lithuanian in Vilnius. President, Gitanas Naoussa.
"The EU, loudly and unanimously, condemns the pressure (exerted) on the use of migrants. I want to express the solidarity of the European Union "and" it is my personal wish to assure Lithuania of the solidarity of the Member States ".
Charles Michel added that he would speak with the Iraqi Prime Minister next week about the repatriation of Iraqis.
During the four-day period from Friday to Monday, 679 migrants crossed the 560-kilometer-long Belarus-Lithuania border. In total, at least 1.232 have passed this year.
"It is very complicated to communicate with a regime whose legitimacy we do not recognize and which sends immigrants not by mistake or negligence, but deliberately - it uses them as a political tool," Nauseda said.
Belarussian President Alexander Lukashenko said on May 26 that his country would no longer prevent migrants from crossing the country's western border to join the EU. sanctions from Brussels after intercepting and forcing a Ryanair passenger plane to land in Minsk, where a Belarusian journalist and dissident was arrested.
"We caught flocks of migrants here - now, forget it, you will catch them," Alexander Lukashenko said.
Charles Michel promised that more members of the European Border and Coast Guard (FRONTEX) would be deployed in Lithuania to help guard its border with Belarus.
The Lithuanian government has ordered the construction of a tent camp to house 1.000 people temporarily and has asked all municipalities to propose venues to be turned into reception centers.