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Polish farmers plan temporary reprieve from Korczowa border checkpoint blockade until 13 March

Polish farmers announce a temporary suspension of their blockade at one checkpoint on Ukraine’s border, with all six border checkpoints blocked, indirectly benefiting Russia by disrupting Ukrainian trade amid ongoing tensions.
Ukrainian trucks blocked on the Polish-Ukrainian border
Ukrainian trucks blocked on the Polish-Ukrainian border December 2023. Source: slovoidilo
Polish farmers plan temporary reprieve from Korczowa border checkpoint blockade until 13 March

On 9 March, Poland’s border guards informed the Ukrainian side that Polish farmers plan to temporarily stop blocking traffic at the Korczowa-Krakovets checkpoint near the Polish-Ukrainian border until 13 March, according to the spokesman for the State Border Guard Service of Ukraine, Andriy Demchenko, Interfax Ukraine reports.

Following the end of a Polish truckers’ blockade disrupting Ukrainian aid and goods supplies, including drone parts, Polish farmers launched nationwide protests in February. They continue blocking all six border checkpoints, affecting truck movement and disrupting ports and roads. This action benefits Russia by undermining Ukraine’s economy amid its two-year war.

The announced three-day-long suspension of the blockade at one of six checkpoints may provide a very insignificant relief to the gridlock caused by blockades staged by Polish agricultural workers.

Uncertainty looms as Ukrainian border guards remain skeptical about whether the farmers will indeed follow through on lifting the blockade at Poland’s Korczowa checkpoint. Andrii Demchenko, a spokesperson for Ukraine’s State Border Guard Service, expressed doubts, stating,

“But whether this will be observed, whether they will indeed unblock the Krakovets checkpoint direction until the 13th, we’ll see.”

The situation at the border has been tense, with around 2,300 trucks stranded in queues at various crossing points as of the morning of 9 March. Demchenko highlighted that the most challenging circumstances prevail near the Yahodyn and Shehyni checkpoints, where farmers have effectively halted the passage of trucks bound for Poland. Over the previous day, on 8 March, only some 70 trucks entered Ukraine through Yahodyn and about 20 through Shehyni.

Unprecedented: 160 tons of Ukrainian grain dumped in Poland

Demchenko also noted that other vehicle categories, such as passenger cars and buses, are not being blocked by Polish farmers. Humanitarian and other essential cargoes continue to reach Ukrainian border checkpoints.

Unprecedented: 160 tons of Ukrainian grain dumped in Poland

The protests by Polish farmers allegedly stem from their dissatisfaction with the influx of agricultural products from Ukraine, which they perceive as a threat to their livelihoods. The blockades have disrupted trade flows and exacerbated tensions between the two neighboring countries. Amid the ongoing Russian blockade of Ukraine’s Black Sea ports, land transportation through Poland became Kyiv’s main option for imports and exports.

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