The boundaries of assistance in Poland

Franciszek Zakrzewski et Tymek Skowroński, historians

Poland shares its borders with Belarus and Ukraine. Since the summer of 2021, and above all since the russian invasion of Ukraine, these two external boundaries of the EU have become the theatre of two humanitarian crises. Differing in nature, in scale, and in the legal status of the migrants concerned, their dissimilarities are also reflected in the response of the polish authorities and the mobilization of civil society. 

Ilya Klein, Untitled, 10 March 2022, digital pain­ting. Credits : Ilya Klein

“Last week we received a visit from a group of border guard offi­cers here at our head­quar­ters They came to us asking us to coope­rate, to help the Ukrai­nians. We couldn’t believe it. Those were the border guards, the same border guards, who made our job diffi­cult while we were trying to help Middle Eastern asylum seekers ente­ring Poland from Belarus”,[1] explained Anna Dąbrowska, president of Homo Faber[2], an asso­cia­tion based in Lublin that works at the country’s two eastern borders.

953.42 kilo­metres : between a “hybrid” war and a real war on the doorstep

Poland has 418.24 km of shared border with Belarus and 535.18 km with Ukraine. Since the summer of 2021, and above all since the Russian inva­sion of Ukraine on 24 February 2022, these two external boun­da­ries of the EU have become the theatre of two huma­ni­ta­rian crises. Dissi­milar in nature and in scale, the situa­tions at the two borders also differ in terms of the legal status of migrants, the response of the Polish autho­ri­ties and the mobi­li­za­tion of civil society. They can none­the­less be moni­tored and compared via feed­back from asso­cia­tions, such as Homo Faber, that work at both borders.

Based in Lublin, Homo Faber formed[3] part of Grupa Granica (Border Group),[4] a social move­ment brin­ging toge­ther 14 orga­ni­za­tions, inha­bi­tants of the border regions and inde­pendent acti­vists, set up in August 2021 to assist migrants at the Belarus border. In its report (avai­lable in English),[5] Grupa Granica describes the situa­tion on the Belarus border since the summer of 2021 as the outcome of orches­trated human traf­fi­cking measures by Alexander Lukashenko’s regime to desta­bi­lize the EU and take revenge for the policy deci­sions that followed the rigged 2020 elec­tions. Migrant groups, inclu­ding large numbers of Iraqi Kurds, are lured by the promise of an easy border cros­sing into the Euro­pean Union, then violently forced across the Polish border in the vast and deso­late primary forest of Biało­wieża, a dange­rous natural area far from the offi­cial cros­sing points. The response of the Polish autho­ri­ties to this “hybrid” war has been to step up secu­rity : decla­ra­tion of a state of emer­gency in 183 muni­ci­pa­li­ties borde­ring Belarus, closure of the zone to non-inha­bi­tants, inclu­ding the media and huma­ni­ta­rian orga­ni­za­tions, lega­li­za­tion of push-backs, and accu­sa­tions of human traf­fi­cking against certain acti­vists (art 264 § 3 of the Penal Code). These few thou­sand people, barely enough to “fill the VIP seats of the National Sports Stadium” in Warsaw, as pointed out by this same report, were suffi­cient to divide opinion and ensure the adop­tion of these radical measures. In this respect, “Luka­shenko has achieved his goal”, concludes Grupa Granica.

This reluc­tance to accept migrants trapped at the Poland-Belarus border constrasts markedly with the welcome provided to refu­gees fleeing the war in Ukraine. Since 24 February, Poland has adopted excep­tional admi­nis­tra­tive measures to take in more than two million Ukrai­nian refu­gees. These include autho­ri­za­tion to cross the border without a passport or iden­tity docu­ments, crea­tion of recep­tion points in border muni­ci­pa­li­ties and towns,[6] simpli­fied access to the admi­nis­tra­tion and public services via a PESEL social secu­rity number,[7] and free access to trains and public trans­port in Polish cities for people with Ukrai­nian documents.

But it is mainly at grass­roots level that citi­zens have become engaged in the last few months, with the mobi­li­za­tion of networks of volun­teers and asso­cia­tions across the country. Recei­ving refu­gees at the border, orga­ni­zing shuttle services to trans­port them elsew­here, coor­di­na­ting housing, hosting refu­gees in private homes, provi­ding legal, admi­nis­tra­tive and linguistic support : these are the new daily pursuits of the Polish people, and not just within the non-govern­mental and asso­cia­tive circles that already specia­lized in recei­ving forei­gners before the war. The Russian inva­sion has spurred many people into action, with the emer­gence of new actors in civil society. Local initia­tives have deve­loped, such as neigh­bou­rhood asso­cia­tions that coor­di­nate the recep­tion of Ukrai­nian arri­vals in their village or district,[9] and dona­tion pots that have sprung up online.[10] Faced with the massive influx of refu­gees at the border and in Polish cities, mobi­li­za­tion was espe­cially strong during the first weeks of the war. In the rail­ways stations of Warsaw, alliances of different players – NGOs, fire­figh­ters, scouts, local volun­teers – were formed to coor­di­nate refugee recep­tion. Some, such as Grupa Zasoby[11] at Warsaw West and Grupa Centrum at Central Station,[12] have since suspended their acti­vi­ties now that refugee numbers have tailed off. Note that this grass­roots mobi­li­za­tion was also supported by NGOs and Ukrai­nian networks already present in Poland, such as the Ukrai­nian House in Warsaw.[13] In Kraków, for example, the NGO Salam Lab,[14] already opera­ting at the Belarus border as part of Grupa Granica,[15] orga­nized a Ukrai­nian refugee recep­tion point in coope­ra­tion with the Polish-Ukrai­nian Zustricz foun­da­tion.[16]


Fran­ciszek Zakr­zewski and Tymek Skowroński, historians

Between the “right” and “wrong” border : enga­ge­ment, coope­ra­tion, repression

On 17 April, certain Ukrai­nian asso­cia­tions issued an alert to the govern­ment and the law enfor­ce­ment agen­cies about the treat­ment of migrants at the Belarus border.[17] While expres­sing a certain grati­tude towards the Polish autho­ri­ties for taking in 2.3 million Ukrai­nians, these asso­cia­tions denounced the “repres­sion of acti­vists” and the “arrest and imme­diate refou­le­ment of ‘illegal immi­grants’ from the Middle East or Africa” who ran the risk of “torture and violence” after being forced back into Belarus. Indeed, in March, while all eyes were focused on the massive inflow of Ukrai­nian refu­gees, the situa­tion on the Belarus border was beco­ming stea­dily worse.

“There is no doubt that the situa­tion in Podla­chia [a region borde­ring Belarus] has dete­rio­rated stea­dily in recent days. It’s as if we were reli­ving the peak of the huma­ni­ta­rian crisis of several months ago. […] Since mid-March, things have started to get syste­ma­ti­cally worse at the border between Poland and Belarus”[18] said Katar­zyna Czar­nota, a member of Grupa Granica, on 22 March 2022. This seems to be a direct conse­quence of the closure of a holding faci­lity in Bruzgi[19] a few kilo­me­ters from the Polish border on the Belarus side. Migrants were held there by the Belarus border guards, some­times for several months, in atro­cious condi­tions – we have received accounts of violence[20] and rape[21]. Among these migrants, some have been sent back to their country of origin, while 700 others, often in poor health, have been pushed across the Polish border, as noted by Amnesty Inter­na­tional Poland.[22]

One reported case concerned 18 people in three Iraqi Kurdish fami­lies, inclu­ding nine chil­dren and one disa­bled person, who had managed to travel 16 km into Poland. On the night of 24–25 March 2022, they were found by acti­vists and a doctor, Paulina Bownik, who gave them medical care.[23] After reaching the border post, the fami­lies were sepa­rated. While the family of the disa­bled person were entitled to apply for inter­na­tional protec­tion and stay in a centre for aliens, the others, inclu­ding a pregnant woman and seven chil­dren, were pushed back across the border fence, without water, food or medi­cine. They were twice forced back into Poland by the Belarus border guards, the Polish patrols on the other side prevented them from advan­cing any further. On 1 April, thanks to pres­sure from acti­vists and media cove­rage of their story, they were finally autho­rized to apply for inter­na­tional protec­tion in Poland, where they were placed in a deten­tion centre by the Polish border police.

Between 29 March and 4 April, the acti­vists of Grupa Granica rescued a total of 130 people in Biało­wieża forest and at least 36 migrants were pushed back by the Polish police, despite a ruling by the regional court of Bielsk Podlaski in August 2021 making these expul­sions to Belarus illegal. The affair concerned three Afghans arrested in late August in Poland and sent back across the border late one night without witnesses and into a dange­rous nature reserve, as was pointed out by the court.[24] This ruling chal­lenged an ordon­nance of the Ministry of the Interior of 20 August 2021 which decreed that all persons who crossed the border ille­gally were to be turned back, without excep­tion for asylum seekers – a text already denounced on 26 August by the Defender of Civil Rights.[25] The war has made these refou­le­ments even more dange­rous, with a further worse­ning of the condi­tions faced by refu­gees in Belarus, whose terri­tory is used for Russian mili­tary maneouvres, and as a firing range for missiles targe­ting Ukraine.

Refou­le­ments and repres­sion of acti­vists are conti­nuing, none­the­less. On 23 March, acti­vists were arrested while rescuing a family with seven chil­dren ;[26] the public prose­cutor wanted to sentence them to three months in arrest but was over­ruled by the court of Hajnówka. Like­wise, a volun­teer from the Club of Catholic Intel­li­gentsia (KIK) was arrested two days later, but released at the request of the courts.[27]

Such acts of repres­sion, desi­gned to inti­mi­date, had already been observed the previous autumn, with instances of mali­cious damage to the cars of doctors working at the Belarus border[28] and police raids on a KIK support centre in Podla­chia,[29] for example.

Clearly, different stan­dards are being applied on the two borders by the Polish state and its police. Assis­tance is welcomed on one and crimi­na­lized on the other. While the know-how of asso­cia­tions is in demand for orga­ni­zing the recep­tion of Ukrai­nians, these same asso­cia­tions are viewed with suspi­cion by the autho­ri­ties on the Belarus border. “Let’s compare the situa­tion of acti­vists on each of these two borders. On one, they are heroes, we are proud, we support them, we iden­tify with them. On the other, they are treated with suspi­cion. And they are often the same acti­vists, the same people, the same orga­ni­za­tions” says the director of Amnesty Inter­na­tional Poland, Anna Błaszczak-Bana­siak[30]


Anna Błaszczak-Bana­siak, director of Amnesty Inter­na­tional Poland

Enga­ge­ment on all levels at both borders

Yet refu­gees are still being supported on both borders with the help of less visible actors, like the inha­bi­tants of the border zone under a state of emer­gency[31] or the ethnic and reli­gious mino­ri­ties who live in Podla­chia. It was the Tatar commu­nity, for example, that orga­nized the Muslim burial of victims found dead in Biało­wieża forest[32] and is now helping to receive Muslims from Ukraine.[33]

This assis­tance covers multiple dimen­sions of need : housing, legal aid, educa­tion, health, etc. For example, the Asso­cia­tion for Legal Inter­ven­tion (Stowar­zys­zenie Inter­wencji Prawnej),[34] a member of Grupa Granica, provides legal assis­tance to migrants and acti­vists at the Belarus border. It is now also working with Ukrai­nian refu­gees to untangle the complexi­ties of their many legal statuses : Ukrai­nians who fled before 24 February who are entitled to special protec­tion ; those present in Poland before that date ; non-Ukrai­nians fleeing the war who face greater diffi­culty in obtai­ning aid and perma­nent status ; unac­com­pa­nied minors ; people wishing to lega­lize their status as Polish resi­dents ; and those in transit to other countries…To this end, Stowar­zys­zenie Inter­wencji Prawnej has set up a trilin­gual website[35] to accom­pany migrants and refu­gees needing legal assistance.

With regard to housing, the Club of Catholic Intel­li­gentsia, whose volun­teers are still provi­ding support at the Belarus border, has set up a hostel in Warsaw for non-Ukrai­nian migrants or Roms who cannot find a place to live.[36] Along­side the Ukrai­nian House in Warsaw, it has also helped to set up an Ukrai­nian school to respond to the “urgent need to provide Ukrai­nian chil­dren taking refuge in Warsaw […] with a chance to complete their school year.”[37]

Homo Faber, for its part, has teamed up with the muni­ci­pa­lity and other asso­cia­tions in Lublin to form the Lublin Social Committee to Aid Ukraine.[38] Based in a city close to Ukraine, and without enough resources to operate on both borders, the committee now focuses on helping Ukrai­nian refu­gees. Their green helpline received 12,000 calls in the first 29 days of the war, their legal experts have handled more than 1,500 cases and their private housing system has found homes for 1,500 people in a city that now counts more than 40,000 Ukrai­nians, equi­va­lent to 10% of the total popu­la­tion of Lublin before the war spread to the entire Ukrai­nian terri­tory. “320 volun­teers work 24 hours a day at 10 recep­tion centres in the city” explained Katar­zyna Wierz­bińska and Anna Dąbrowska from Homo Faber during their speech to the Euro­pean Parlia­ment on 21 April.[39]

The situa­tions on the two borders of Poland are very different and rapidly chan­ging. While the inflow of Ukrai­nian refu­gees has tailed off, with arri­vals even outnum­bered by retur­nees, the long-term resi­dence of Ukrai­nians in Poland, where the public systems of health and educa­tion have been seve­rely stret­ched by the COVID pandemic, raises a new set of ques­tions. A certain fatigue is now percep­tible among the actors of civil society, mobi­lized for more than two months now, and some tensions have emerged, notably between the govern­ment and the local autho­ri­ties overw­helmed by the crisis.[40] At the same time, the Polish-Ukrai­nian border has also become a stra­tegic hub for the transfer of mili­tary and huma­ni­ta­rian aid to Ukraine, and for the return of men heading for the front. While the brutal Russian offen­sive conti­nues in Ukraine, the future appears more uncer­tain than ever in the eyes of its Polish neighbours.

[1] Source : The Guar­dian, 3 March 2022. URL : https://​www​.theguar​dian​.com/​g​l​o​b​a​l​-​d​e​v​e​l​o​p​m​e​n​t​/​2​0​2​2​/​m​a​r​/​0​5​/​p​o​l​a​n​d​-​r​u​s​h​-​t​o​-​a​i​d​-​u​k​r​a​i​n​e​-​r​e​f​u​g​e​e​s​-​r​u​s​s​ia-war.

[2] 2 Asso­cia­tion website : https://​arch​.hf​.org​.pl/​i​n​d​e​x​.​p​h​p?id=7.

[3] Lacking the resources to operate effec­ti­vely on the Belarus border and assist the thou­sands of refu­gees fleeing Ukraine, Homo Faber left Grupa Granica on 16 March 2022. It conti­nued working with Grupa Granica, however, through a conti­nued presence in Siemia­tycze, the provi­sion of storage faci­li­ties in Lublin and psycho­lo­gical support to all Grupa Granica volun­teers. See the Face­book post on 16 March 2022 : https://​www​.face​book​.com/​H​F​L​u​b​l​i​n​/​p​o​s​t​s​/​3​8​0​3​0​1​3​5​7​431474.

[4] Grupa Granica website : https://​www​.grupa​gra​nica​.pl/.

[5] Read the report here : https://​www​.grupa​gra​nica​.pl/​f​i​l​e​s​/​G​r​u​p​a​-​G​r​a​n​i​c​a​-​R​e​p​o​r​t​-​H​u​m​a​n​i​t​a​r​i​a​n​-​c​r​i​s​i​s​-​a​t​-​t​h​e​-​P​o​l​i​s​h​-​B​e​l​a​r​u​s​i​a​n​-​b​o​r​d​er.pdf.

[6] See the govern­ment web page (in English): https://​poma​ga​mu​krainie​.gov​.pl/​p​o​t​r​z​e​b​u​j​e​-​p​o​m​o​c​y​/​p​r​z​y​j​a​z​d​-​d​o​-​polski.

[7] See the govern­ment web page (in English): https://​poma​ga​mu​krainie​.gov​.pl/​p​o​t​r​z​e​b​u​j​e​-​p​o​m​o​c​y​/pesel.

[8] To date, the border police have counted around 3.7 million cros­sings at the Ukraine-Poland border (Source : https://​300gos​po​darka​.pl/​n​e​w​s​/​u​c​h​o​d​z​c​y​-​z​-​u​k​r​a​i​n​y​-​w​-​p​o​l​s​c​e​-​liczba). For several reasons, this figure does not corres­pond to the number of Ukrai­nian refu­gees in Poland. An increa­sing number are retur­ning home, some have arrived from other EU coun­tries and others are moving elsew­here. An article dated 9 May 2022 mentions 1.1 million PESEL numbers allo­cated to Ukrai­nian refu­gees (Source :­nister-podala-dane). A text publi­shed by OKO​.press at the end of April gives a figure of around 3.2 million Ukrai­nians in Poland, inclu­ding those who lived there before 24 February and those who arrived after the start of the inva­sion (Source : https://​oko​.press/​i​l​u​-​u​c​h​o​d​z​c​o​w​-​z​-​u​k​r​a​i​n​y​-​n​a​p​r​a​w​d​e​-​p​r​z​e​b​y​w​a​-​w​-​p​o​l​s​c​e​-​u​s​t​alamy/). Accor­ding to a report by the geogra­pher Paweł Cywiński for the Union of Polish Metro­po­lises (UPM) and based on the recog­ni­tion of Ukrai­nian SIM cards (See the report, in Polish : https://​metro​polie​.pl/​a​r​t​y​k​u​l​/​r​a​p​o​r​t​-​m​i​e​j​s​k​a​-​g​o​s​c​i​n​n​o​s​c​-​w​i​e​l​k​i​-​w​z​r​o​s​t​-​w​y​z​w​a​n​i​a​-​i​-​szanse).

[9] For example Pomoc Ukrainie : https://​inic​ja​ty​wa​sa​siedzka​.org/.

[10] Like this one, for example : https://​www​.siepo​maga​.pl/​e​n​/​u​k​r​a​i​n​a​-​p​o​t​r​z​e​b​u​j​e​-​w​s​parcia.

[11] See the website (in Polish): https://​grupa​za​soby​.pl/.

[12] See the Face­book group : https://​www​.face​book​.com/​g​r​o​u​p​s​/​g​r​u​p​a​c​e​n​t​r​u​m.waw/.

[13] See the website (in Polish): https://​ukrains​kidom​.pl/.

[14] See the website (in English):https://​salamlab​.pl/​e​n​/​u​k​r​a​i​n​e​-​w​h​a​t​-​h​a​v​e​-​w​e​-​a​c​h​i​e​v​e​d​-​s​o-far/.

[15] Read this testi­mony in English of an Iraqi who managed to cross the Belarus border to Poland posted on the Salam Lab website :‑survived-crossing-the-polish-belarusian-border-a-testimony/.

[16] Site of the Zustricz foun­da­tion (in Polish): https://​zustricz​.pl/.

[17] See the appeal by Grupa Granica dated 17 April 2022 (in Polish): https://​naszwybor​.org​.pl/​a​p​e​l​-2022/.

[18]Source : OKO​.press (in Polish), 22 March 2022, https://​oko​.press/​4​0​-​d​n​i​o​w​e​-​n​i​e​m​o​w​l​e​-​z​-​r​o​d​z​i​n​a​-​u​w​i​e​z​i​o​n​e​-​n​a​-​b​a​g​n​a​c​h​-​k​r​y​z​y​s​-​n​a​-​p​o​d​l​a​s​i​u​-​t​r​w​a​-​nadal/.

[19]Source : The Guar­dian (in English), 14 March 2022, https://​www​.theguar​dian​.com/​g​l​o​b​a​l​-​d​e​v​e​l​o​p​m​e​n​t​/​2​0​2​2​/​m​a​r​/​1​4​/​f​e​a​r​s​-​g​r​o​w​-​o​f​-​n​e​w​-​c​r​i​s​i​s​-​a​s​-​r​e​f​u​g​e​e​s​-​i​n​-​b​e​l​a​r​u​s​-​d​r​i​v​e​n​-​i​n​t​o​-​u​kraine.

[20]Source : Amnesty Interna­tional (in Polish), 21 December 2021, https://​amnesty​.org​.pl/​b​i​a​l​o​r​u​s​-​p​o​l​s​k​a​-​u​e​-​n​o​w​e​-​d​o​w​o​d​y​-​p​r​z​e​m​o​c​y​-​w​o​b​e​c​-​u​c​h​o​d​z​c​o​w​-​m​i​g​r​a​n​t​ow-ek/.

[21] Source : wyso​kieob​casy​.pl (in Polish), 25 March 2022, https://​www​.wyso​kieob​casy​.pl/​w​y​s​o​k​i​e​-​o​b​c​a​s​y​/​7​,​1​6​3​2​2​9​,​2​8​2​6​3​0​7​4​,​a​k​t​y​w​i​s​t​k​a​-​z​-​g​r​a​n​i​c​y​-​p​o​l​s​k​o​-​b​i​a​l​o​r​u​s​k​i​e​j​-​m​a​t​k​a​-​d​a​l​a​-​s​i​e​-​z​g​w​a​l​c​i​c​.​h​t​m​l​?​d​i​s​a​b​l​e​R​e​d​i​r​e​c​t​s=true.

[22] See the report by Amnesty Inter­na­tional Poland dated 11 April 2022 (in Polish),­tional-POLSKA-OKRUCIENSTWO-ZAMIAST-WSPOLCZUCIA-NA-GRANICY-Z-BIALORUSIA.pdf?smclient=923ffe2e-138d-4b2a-bbde-2511e5d4c666.

[23] Source : wyborca​.pl (in Polish), 31 March 2022,,35241,28286110,prawo-na-pograniczu-push-backi-nielegalne-a-chora-kurdyjska.html?_ga=2.103632000.1288905986.1648582878%E2%80%93%2011332514.1530023801&disableRedirects=true#S.DT%E2%80%91K.C%E2%80%91B.1%E2%80%91L.1.duzy

[24]Source : Stowar­zys­zenie In­terwencji Prawnej (in Polish), 31 March 2022,­manitarne-niezgodne-z-prawem-i-opieraja-sie-na-nielegalnym-rozporzadzeniu/.

[25] See the denun­cia­tion by the Defender of Civil Rights (in Polish): https://​bip​.brpo​.gov​.pl/​p​l​/​c​o​n​t​e​n​t​/​z​m​i​a​n​y​-​w​-​r​o​z​p​o​r​z​a​d​z​e​n​i​u​-​w​-​s​p​r​a​w​i​e​-​c​z​a​s​o​w​e​g​o​-​z​a​w​i​e​s​z​e​n​i​a​-​l​u​b​-​o​g​r​a​n​i​c​z​e​n​i​a​-​r​u​c​h​u​-​g​r​a​n​i​cznego.

[26] Source : posting on the Grupa Gra­nica Face­book group (in Polish), 25 March 2022, ?_​rdr.

[27] Source : KIK website (in Polish), 27 March 2022, https://​www​.kik​.waw​.pl/​a​k​t​u​a​l​n​o​s​c​i​-​k​i​k​/​w​o​l​o​n​t​a​r​i​u​s​z​k​a​-​k​i​k​-​z​a​t​r​z​ymana/.

[28]Source : Rzecz­pos­po­lita (in Polish), 14 Nov. 2021, https://​www​.rp​.pl/​k​r​a​j​/​a​r​t​1​9​1​0​0​9​8​1​-​z​n​i​s​z​c​z​o​n​o​-​a​u​t​a​-​m​e​d​y​k​o​w​-​p​o​m​a​g​a​j​a​c​y​c​h​-​p​r​z​y​-​g​r​a​n​i​c​y​-​b​i​a​l​o​r​uskiej.

[29]Source : OKO​.press (in Polish), 16 Dec. 2021,­lickiej-na-granicy-jak-najazd-na-kartel-narkotykowy/.

[30]Source : Amnesty Inter­na­tional Poland (in Polish), 9 March 2022,­cach-z-bialorusia-i-ukraina-rozmowa/.

[31] See the Face­book page of Biało­wieska Akcja Humani­tarna [Huma­ni­ta­rian action in Biało­wieża] created in November 2021 :łowieska-Akcja-Humanitarna-103160258861314/about.

[32]Source : Polskie Radio Bia­lystok, 27 Nov. 2021, https://​www​.radio​.bialystok​.pl/​w​i​a​d​o​m​o​s​c​i​/​i​n​d​e​x​/​i​d​/​207398.

[33] Source : website of Muzuł­mański Związek Reli­gijny [Muslim Reli­gious Union], 17 March 2022, http://​mzr​.pl/​p​o​m​o​c​-​d​l​a​-​u​c​h​o​d​z​c​o​w​-​z​-​u​k​r​a​i​n​y​-​w​-​t​a​t​a​r​s​k​i​m​-​c​e​n​t​r​u​m​-​k​u​l​t​u​r​y​-​i​s​l​a​m​u​-​w​-​s​u​c​h​owoli/.

[34] See a presen­ta­tion of the Asso­cia­tion for Legal Inter­ven­tion in English : https://​inter​wenc​ja​prawna​.pl/​e​n​/​a​b​o​u​t​/​w​h​a​t​-​we-do/.

[35] Website of the legal portal for people fleeing Ukraine : https://​ukraina​.inter​wenc​ja​prawna​.pl/en/.

[36]Source : The Guar­dian, 21 March 2022 : https://​www​.theguar​dian​.com/​g​l​o​b​a​l​-​d​e​v​e​l​o​p​m​e​n​t​/​2​0​2​2​/​m​a​r​/​2​1​/​p​o​l​a​n​d​-​u​k​r​a​i​n​e​-​r​e​f​u​g​e​e​s​-​e​n​t​i​r​e​-​w​o​r​l​d​-​h​o​s​t​e​l​-​e​v​e​r​y​o​n​e​-​w​elcome.

[37] Webite of the Warsaw Ukrai­nian School : https://​www​.vshkolu​.edu​.pl/.

[38] Web page about the committee : https://​www​.lsi​-lublin​.pl/​i​n​f​o​r​m​a​c​j​e​-​r​o​z​n​e​/​l​u​b​e​l​s​k​i​-​s​p​o​l​e​c​z​n​y​-​k​o​m​i​t​e​t​-​p​o​m​o​c​y​-​u​k​r​ainie/.

[39] See the video of the speech by Katar­zyna Wierz­bińska and Anna Dąbrowska on the Homo Faber­Fa­ce­book page : https://​fb​.watch/​d​v​b​7​N​89UFm/.

[40]Source : Regiony (in Polish), 30 March 2022, https://​regiony​.rp​.pl/​d​e​b​a​t​a​-​p​u​b​l​i​c​z​n​a​/​a​r​t​3​5​9​7​9​0​4​1​-​s​a​m​o​r​z​a​d​o​w​c​y​-​c​h​c​a​-​z​w​o​l​a​n​i​a​-​o​k​r​a​g​l​e​g​o​-​s​t​o​l​u​-​w​-​s​p​r​a​w​i​e​-​u​c​h​odzcow.

The authors

Fran­ciszek Zakr­zewski, is a museum profes­sional and a PhD student in history at EHESS and at the ERC Lubart­world project headed by Claire Zalc.
Tymek Skowroński is studying for a Master’s degree in history at EHESS.

Quote this article

Fran­ciszek Zakr­zewski and Tymek Skowroński, “The boun­da­ries of assis­tance in Poland”, in : Antonin Durand, Thomas Chopard, Cathe­rine Gous­seff and Claire Zalc (ed.), Feature “Migra­tion and the borders of Ukraine at war”, De facto [Online], 33 | June 2022, posted online on 24 June 2022. URL :–01/


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