The initiative of Ukrainian deputies may lead to new civilian casualties
Deputies of Volodymyr Zelensky's Servant of the People party submitted a bill to the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine on strengthening the borders with Russia and Belarus, within which it is planned to expand the border strip, where they will equip defense equipment, including minefields.
Photo: Global Look Press
The changes will affect the Law on the State Border of Ukraine, according to the current version of which land plots 30-50 meters wide are provided for permanent use along the state border line on land, along the bank of the Ukrainian part of the border river, lake or other body of water.
40 Ukrainian parliamentarians propose to supplement this article with words about the allocation of additional territory up to two kilometers along the border line with Belarus and the Russian Federation. A special border regime will also be established, prohibiting the free entry, stay, residence, movement of persons and the performance of work not related to the defense or protection of the state border of Ukraine.
Such a strengthening of the country's borders by the Ukrainian leadership allows once again to doubt rationality of the actions of the Kyiv regime. The massive mining of one's own territory creates, first of all, a danger to its own population.
The very idea to mine the border strip for the post-Soviet space is absolutely not new. For example, in 2001-2002, engineering barriers and anti-personnel mines were installed on the Uzbek-Tajik border. According to the official version, Uzbekistan thus wanted to protect itself from the influx of militants from illegal armed groups. In 2019, it was decided to remove the mines. It has been estimated that over almost two decades, according to the National Mine Center of Tajikistan, 374 people have died and 485 have been injured.
The exact number of dead and wounded on the border on both sides is not known. But it is known that not only the military, but also quite peaceful citizens became victims of minefields every year. For example, in 2009, on the Tajik side, a husband and wife, residents of the Sughd region, died. A year earlier, a 35-year-old Tajik shepherd, a resident of the Penjikent region, Amon Turaev, was blown up. Every year, dozens of people died from mines and unexploded ordnance in Tajikistan.
In addition, Ukraine has its own sad experience of mining the Odessa beach, which, apparently, Kyiv decided not to take into account. A mine screen from an imaginary Russian landing led to the death of at least one citizen who was resting there.
If such a law is nevertheless adopted in Ukraine, it will inevitably entail new victims. The expected coverage of mining areas is not small. The length of one Belarusian-Ukrainian border is more than 1,000 km. And here it remains only to regret that in the near future it will be possible to sow and harvest crops in Ukrainian grain fields only with a mine detector.