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Blockade of buses, trucks and trains by Poles and Ukraine's response: what is known about the protests at the border?

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Blockade of buses, trucks and trains by Poles and Ukraine's response: what is known about the protests at the border?

Polish protesters have begun blocking not only trucks but also passenger transport. Find out what is happening at the border, what response to the blockade Ukraine is preparing, and what Ukrainian entrepreneurs think about the protests

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The blockade of the Ukrainian border by Poland continues, but now Polish protesters are not limited to blocking freight transport and have begun to obstruct the movement of buses and trains. According to Deputy Minister of Infrastructure Serhiy Derkach, the situation at the border is becoming even more critical.


What is happening at the borders, how Ukraine is responding to the blockade, and what Ukrainian entrepreneurs think about the Polish protests are described in the article below.


Which checkpoints are blocked and how many trucks are in the queue?


Currently, 6 checkpoints are blocked for the free movement of trucks, namely: Yahodyn - Dorohusk, Uhryniv - Dolhobychuv, Ustyluh - Zosin, Shehyni - Medyka, Rava-Ruska - Hrebenne, and Krakivets - Korchova. The most critical situation, according to Derkach, is at the Yahodyn-Dorohusk checkpoint, where the movement of freight transport has stopped altogether.


About 3,000 trucks are blocked on the road in Poland. Among them are those carrying medicines, perishable food and fuel. In addition, even empty trucks from Ukraine, which are on their way to pick up critical cargo, are not allowed to pass through Yagotyn.


Also on the social network "X", users share information that trucks with military equipment waiting for Ukrainian soldiers are blocked at the border.


"These photos show trucks that are supposed to go to the artillerymen to quickly unload ammunition at the position," writes Nazar Smyk.



Screenshot from "X"


Poles blocked a train with passengers: what is known?


On Sunday, February 18, Polish protesters blocked the movement of the passenger train №119 "Kyiv - Chełm" with 260 passengers, the vast majority of whom were children and women. Ukrzaliznytsia emphasized that many of the passengers had further connections and flights.


The train was later resumed, and the carrier said it was closely monitoring the situation and communicating with the competent authorities to ensure that such situations do not happen again.


"Ukrzaliznytsia emphasizes the inadmissibility of blocking railway traffic. We consider such actions of the protesters outrageous, given the history of partnership and economic relations between our countries. In addition, such actions negatively affect the defense of Ukraine and the security of the EU's borders from the russian aggressor," Ukrzaliznytsia said in a statement.


Blocking of bus traffic on the border with Poland


According to the Ministry of Infrastructure, a video was posted online showing a crowd of Polish protesters blocking the passage of buses with passengers. The Ukrainian side immediately responded to the situation. Thus, according to the ministry, Infrastructure Minister Oleksandr Kubrakov held urgent talks with Jacek Siewera, head of the Polish National Security Bureau, on the inadmissibility of blocking the border, including passenger transport.


"Blocking the border is a direct threat to the security of the defending country... We expect concrete actions from our Polish colleagues to prevent such situations and solve the problem in general," Kubrakov emphasized.




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Ukrainian carriers are preparing protests in response to the Poles


Today, on February 20, Ukrainian carriers will start a peaceful protest at three checkpoints: Rava-Ruska, Krakivets and Shehyni. This was reported to Ukrinform by Volodymyr Mykhalevych, head of the International Road Carriers of Ukraine (IUCU) NGO.


"The situation with the blockade has not yet been resolved at the level of ministries, governments and presidents of Ukraine and Poland, so we are forced to take such actions," Mikhalevich said.


Thus, Polish trucks will no longer be able to bypass the general queue of trucks. The protest will be held around the clock until March 15, 2024. Or until the borders are unblocked by Polish protesters.


In addition, a source in the Ukrainian government, Mykola Solsky, Minister of Agrarian Policy and Food of Ukraine, told Forbes that Ukraine is considering a ban on imports of Polish agricultural products. According to the source, the decision could be made within two weeks. 


Reaction of Ukrainian entrepreneurs to the blockade of the border by Poland


Ukrainian entrepreneurs consider the issue of unblocking the borders to be more important than corruption and business war risk insurance. This is evidenced by the results of the monthly survey of industrial enterprises (#NRES) of the Institute for Economic Research and Policy Consulting (IER).


Thus, among the expected changes needed to improve the business climate in Ukraine, entrepreneurs noted: unblocking the borders (20.7% of respondents), resolving issues with corruption and insurance (17% each), booking employees from mobilization (15%) and resolving issues with blocking tax invoices (6%).


It is noted that the percentage of enterprises reporting a decrease in exports increased from 20% in December to 34% in January. At the same time, the share of companies reporting export growth decreased from 31% in December to 19% in January.


Remember! In order to leave Ukraine and travel freely in European countries by car, a driver must have a Green Card insurance policy. The absence or delay of insurance is fraught not only with fines that are several dozen times higher than the cost of the insurance policy for a year, but also with the seizure of the car and deportation from the country with a subsequent entry ban. You can take out insurance for the required period on our website. Read more about the amount of fines in Europe for not having a Green Card here.


Read how to get from Poland to Ukraine in 2024 here.


Main photo: Ukrinform.ua


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