Lithuania's State Border Guard Service (VSAT) says Belarus has been staging fake incidents of brutality against migrants in order to accuse Poland and Lithuania of “inhumane treatment”. It has rejected the latest accusation from Belarus officials as absurd.
On Monday, Belarus' authoritarian leader Alexander Lukashenko accused Lithuanian border guards of dumping the bodies of migrants into Belarus.
Read more: Migration crisis in Baltics and Poland
“Belarusian officials are circulating reports that have nothing to do with reality, accusing Lithuanian border guards of brutal treatment of migrants, of beating them to death and even dumping dead bodies in Belarus,” the VSAT said in a statement on Monday.
“The Lithuanian VSAT categorically denies such disinformation and treats similar reports by the neighbouring country as absurd.”
The agency said that the Belarusian authorities had previously attempted to forge evidence of beatings and deaths of migrants, in order to blame Lithuania and Poland for “inhumane treatment”.
“It is possible that Belarusian structures may undertake other provocations that go beyond common sense on the border with Lithuania,” the VSAT said.
“The primitive tactic of blaming Lithuania and other EU countries for the migrant crisis on the border with Belarus is nothing new,” it added.
Almost 4,200 irregular migrants have crossed into Lithuania from Belarus so far this year, and over 7,600 more have been turned away by border guards.
Vilnius has accused the Minsk government of migrant smuggling, calling it “hybrid aggression”.