Rogue roadblock over: private Slovak border stunt ends as truck traffic flow resumes
Photo: social networks

The closure of the Slovak-Ukrainian border on Tuesday was an individual initiative. One vehicle with the emblem of the Union of Motor Carriers of Slovakia (UNAS) blocked the movement of freight transport, but the union itself distanced itself from it.

It was previously reported that on Tuesday, around 1:30 p.m., a protest by Slovak truckers, who, like their Polish colleagues, demanded the cancellation of the "transport visa-free regime" for Ukraine and the return of the permit system for cargo transportation began at the Vyšne Nemecke checkpoint.

Passage of cars and buses for entry and exit at the checkpoint was carried out as usual. But the number of trucks that were able to cross the border that day decreased significantly - up to 250 cars in both directions. This is about 100 units fewer than the previous days.

The head of UNAS, Stanislav Skala, in a comment to the Slovak TASR agency, said that the union held a warning action on November 16, but it was not responsible for yesterday's blockade. UNAS claims that this was the initiative of an individual.

The video from social networks shows that one minibus with a trailer blocked the road for trucks.

According to Skala, the union may block the border again, but first wants to wait for the outcome of the negotiations between the Polish protesters, the European Commission and representatives of the Ukrainian and Polish governments.

Overnight on November 21-22, traffic was unblocked in Vyšne Nemecke, according to the website of the State Border Service of Ukraine.

Currently, there are about 350 trucks in Slovakia on the approach to the Vyšne Nemecke point in the direction of Ukraine.

On November 6, a strike by Polish truck drivers began in the afternoon at border crossings along the Polish-Ukrainian frontier. As a result, multi-kilometer queues consisting of hundreds of trucks developed at the three largest checkpoints.

The carriers were reportedly protesting the situation in which they allege Ukrainian truck drivers are "taking jobs away from Poles."

Three checkpoints were blocked as a result: Korczowa - Krakivets, Hrebenne - Rava-Ruska, and Dorohusk - Yahodyn. The protesters pledged to continue the blockade until January 3, 2024, demanding that Polish authorities address their concerns.

Both Ukraine and the European Union firmly declined the primary request of the demonstrators - to eliminate the "visa-free transport regime" that currently exists between Ukraine and the EU.