UN Security Council members trade blows over Belarus

Russia traded barbs with western members of the UN security council on Thursday over the migrant crisis on the Belarus-Poland border.

The European Union has accused Belarus of encouraging thousands of migrants to cross into Poland and other neighboring countries, as retaliation for sanctions.

Many have done so with wire cutters they say were given to them by Belarusian border guards.

The security council's western bloc on Thursday condemned Belarus's actions, calling President Alexander Lukashenko a threat to regional stability.

"We condemned the orchestrated instrumentalization of human beings whose lives and well-being have been put in danger for political purposes by Belarus, with the objective of destabilizing neighboring countries."

Russia doubled down on its support for ally Belarus, though it has denied its own involvement in the crisis.

Its deputy ambassador to the U.N. Dmitry Polyanskiy called the accusations 'masochistic'.

"Frankly I started to suspect that maybe our Estonian, French and other colleagues, they have some kind of masochist inclinations because to raise this topic, which are a total shame for the EU, in front of us, would be very brave."

Poland's defense ministry on Thursday released footage of what appeared to be border guards sending migrants away.

"Go Belarus, this place full"

While Belarus warned the crisis could escalate into a military confrontation.

Ukraine, which has said it would deploy thousands more troops on its own border, also released footage of drills meant to hold migrants back.

Most of the migrants have remained trapped between Belarus and Poland's borders, enduring freezing weather in makeshift camps.

Poland has reported at least seven migrant deaths in the months-long crisis.

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