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Strike and queues on Poland border: What happening and where situation is worst?

Strike and queues on Poland border: What happening and where situation is worst? 2300 trucks are queuing up at the Polish-Ukrainian border (Photo: Getty Images)

Today, over two thousand trucks are waiting in queues on Poland's territory towards Ukraine. The largest queue is reported at the Krakovets checkpoint, where Polish carriers initiated a blockade starting on November 6.

What is known about the situation on the border with Poland and where it is currently the most difficult, Andriy Demchenko, a spokesman for the State Border Guard Service, told RBC-Ukraine.

Border with Poland: situation at the checkpoints

Regarding the directions of Yagodyn, Krakovets, and Rava Ruska, where the blockade by Polish carriers started on November 6, 2300 trucks are waiting in line towards Ukraine. Border guards note minimal movement.

Yesterday, the Medyka-Shehyni side has also blocked the Polish checkpoint.

"Every hour, the Polish side can allow several trucks to pass in both directions, be it exit or entry, ranging from 2, 5, 8. It varies at different checkpoints. However, this does not add to the intensity of movement," said Demchenko in his comment to the publication.


According to the spokesperson of the State Border Guard Service, in the past 24 hours, 150 trucks crossed the border in both directions at the Yagodyn checkpoint. However, before the blockade on this route, the border was crossed by 1200-1300 trucks.


Demchenko notes that there is a relatively more intensive flow of trucks toward the Krakovets checkpoint.


Yesterday, Polish carriers also started the blockade of the Medyka-Shehyni checkpoint. The Ukrainian border guards were informed about this by the Polish side.

"Earlier, they indicated that the blockade of the "Medyka-Shehyni" direction would take place from the 23rd to the 26th, but usually, these actions could take place during the daytime because at 21:00 yesterday, the Polish side announced that the movement was unblocked," Demchenko noted.

As of the morning, 1400 trucks were waiting in line towards Ukraine in this direction on the territory of Poland.

Situation at the borders with Slovakia and Hungary

Due to the actions taken by participants in the protest on Poland's territory, drivers and carriers are choosing alternative routes. Therefore, the State Border Guard Service notes an increase in queues at the borders with Slovakia and Hungary.

For example, in the direction of "Uzhgorod-Vyshne Nemecke" on the territory of Slovakia towards Ukraine, there were about 400 trucks as of the morning.

At the same time, in the direction of the Tysa checkpoint on the border with Hungary, there were 460 trucks.

"If we talk more specifically about the border section with Slovakia, in recent days, we have observed intense truck traffic. There is no blockade. But, of course, this direction has become more loaded due to the situation on the border with Poland," said Demchenko.

Does the Ukrainian side organize pickets in response?

On November 21, Ukrainian carriers held a preventive action on the border with Poland near the Krakovets-Korchova checkpoint in the Lviv region in response to the blockade by Polish carriers. In response to the clarifying question of whether similar pickets are currently observed from the Ukrainian side, the State Border Guard Service stated that they do not have such information.

"We do not observe such actions in the checkpoints on the territory of Ukraine on the border with Poland," Demchenko concluded.

Strike at the border with Poland

On November 6, a strike by Polish carriers began on the border. It involved three checkpoints, to which a fourth was added yesterday. Participants in the protest essentially demanded the cancellation of the transport visa-free regime.

They advocate a return to the system of permits for Ukrainians for freight transportation, separate lanes and queues for trucks with EU plates and empty ones, and access to the Shlyakh system.

Recent events show that Ukraine initiated the creation of a monitoring group on the part of the EU at the border. According to the Deputy Minister for Development of Communities, Territories, and Infrastructure Serhiy Derkach, Ukraine is allegedly preparing to evacuate drivers blocked on the border with Poland.

The situation at the Polish border is complex. Among the blocked trucks, there are those carrying humanitarian aid. Also, the strike by Polish carriers has already led to two deaths at the border.