18 Sep 2023 11:18

Poland to start installing electronic barrier on Belarusian border along Bug River this year, no physical barrier planned - minister

MINSK. Sept 18 (Interfax) - The installation of an electronic barrier on the border with Belarus along the Bug River will begin this year, but it is not planned to install a physical barrier there, Polish Interior and Administration Minister Mariusz Kaminski said.

"On Friday [September 15], the Border Guard announced a tender for building an electronic barrier along the Bug River on the border with Belarus," Kaminski said. "The tender will be finalized in mid-November, so that the chosen contractor could begin construction work as early as this year," he said.

Kaminski gave a press conference at the Terespol-Brest border checkpoint on Sunday. The PAP agency quoted his comments.

"The electronic barrier will be about 172 kilometers long and will include about 4,500 day-night cameras and thermal imagers, motion sensors, and hundreds of kilometers of transmission cables," he said.

"Any attempt at trespassing the border over the river will be detected by our border guards," Kaminski said.

"It is not planned to build engineering, physical fortifications along the Bug River, so that our citizens could access the river," he said.

Back in January-December 2022, Poland built a fence along the entire border with Belarus except for the Bug River. The steel fence is 186 kilometers long and 5.5 meters tall with barbed wire on top.

The electronic barrier's installation on the ground part of the Polish-Belarusian border was completed in summer 2023. It includes 11 containers with integrated electronic control systems, among them night vision cameras, thermal imagers, and tens of kilometers of surveillance cables. The surveillance center in Byalistok controls the electronic barrier's operation.