A. Situation analysis
Description of the disaster
Since mid-May 2021 the number of people who enter Lithuania irregularly from Belarus has been increasing rapidly.
Following the series of recent events at the Lithuanian – Belarusian border, Lithuania declared a state of emergency on 2 July 2021.
As of 7 July 2021, the total number of new arrivals is 1,416. The number indicates a 1648% increase in irregular border crossings, compared to year 2020 (for more detailed information see Table 1).
Before the crisis, asylum seekers used to stay isolated at the Lithuanian border for 1 to 3 days until receiving COVID19 testing results and then moving into reception centers. Main reception centers in Lithuania and their capacities are the following:
• The Foreigners Registration Center (hereinafter – FRC) in Pabradė, capacity (excluding tents): 250 people,
• Refugee Reception Center (hereinafter – RRC) in Rukla, capacity: 212 people.
• Family Support Center in Jieznas, capacity: 40 people.
However, the sudden influx of migrants has put enormous pressure to the reception system. In early June, the Foreigners Registration Center in Pabradė ran over its maximum capacity. As COVID-19 prevention measures require lower occupancy and separate accommodation, the following places were opened as mandatory isolation and/ or reception facilities:
• Border Guards’ School in Medininkai, capacity of 130 people for isolating families,
• Tent city in Pabradė, built to accommodate male migrants, capacity of 350 people, 60 of which are used for mandatory isolation purposes.