Poland, Lithuania, Latvia Mull Invoking NATO Article 4 Over Belarus Migrant Crisis

Migrants gather on the Belarusian-Polish border near the Polish border crossing in Kuznica on November 15, 2021. - Thousands of migrants -- most of them from the Middle East -- have crossed or attempted to cross the EU and NATO border since the summer. Western countries have accused the Belarusian …

Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki stated on Sunday that his country was in talks with the leaders of Lithuania and Latvia over invoking NATO Article 4 as the migrant crisis with Belarus continues.

Article 4 of the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) allows members of the organisation to call for consultation when they feel their “territorial integrity, political independence or security of any of the parties is threatened.”

“It is not enough just for us to publicly express our concern – now we need concrete steps and the commitment of the entire alliance,” Prime Minister Morawiecki said as thousands of migrants remain on the border between Poland and Belarus, the Polish News Agency PAP reports.

“We are discussing with Latvia and especially Lithuania about whether to trigger Article 4,” Morawiecki stated.

Article 4 has only been triggered a total of four times in the past, all of them by Turkey relating to the 2003 Iraq war and conflicts between Turkey and Syria in 2021, and 2020.

Polish Deputy Foreign Minister Marcin Przydacz also spoke on the topic of triggering article 4 on Sunday saying, “of course, we are constantly analyzing the possibility of using Article 4, but let us remember that after Article 4 other is only Article 5, i.e. the call for allied forces for armed support, and this can also be read as a possible escalation.”

“If it is necessary to use it, we have the full support of all the other 29 allies, if necessary, there will be absolutely no problem with using Article 4, but at a time when it will actually work properly mitigating on the other side and God forbid escalating,” he said.

Some have already warned of the possibility of escalation over the migrant crisis, which has been described by EU officials and politicians as a form of “hybrid warfare”  or a “hybrid attack” on the part of Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko.

Finland’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Pekka Haavisto stated earlier this month that the situation risked turning into an open conflict, while Piotr Müller, the spokesman for the Polish government, said an armed conflict could also be possible.

Belarus, meanwhile, has also increased tensions by making threats to cut off gas supplies to European countries as additional European Union sanctions loom on the horizon. Europe is currently facing major issues with energy prices as a result of low stockpiles of gas, which have had a knock-on effect and increased prices of other goods as well.

Follow Chris Tomlinson on Twitter at @TomlinsonCJ or email at ctomlinson(at)breitbart.com


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