The Border Guard Service of Ukraine says it has launched a “special operation” on the border with Belarus amid concerns that a migrant crisis at the Polish-Belarusian frontier could spill into Ukrainian territory.
The service said in a statement that the operation is part of measures to “increase the protection and defense of the Ukrainian border in order to prevent a migration crisis and combat illegal activities.”
The operation is being conducted jointly with the National Guard, the National Police, and the Armed Forces, the service said.
Aircraft, unmanned aerial vehicles, and technical means of surveillance will be actively used in border protection for patrolling and monitoring, it added.
Volodymyr Nikiforenko, the deputy head of the Border Guard Service, said the main task of the operation was to prevent illegal migrants from crossing the state border and entering Ukraine.
Ukraine has deployed 8,500 troops and police officers to guard its border with Belarus, aiming to prevent possible attempts by migrants to breach the frontier.
It also said some of its airborne units carried out paratrooper jumps in the southern Mykolayiv region, near the country’s main seaport of Odesa and Russia-occupied Crimea.