Tensions have eased on the border between Poland and Belarus, where thousands of migrants had been stranded in freezing conditions.
After a violent confrontation erupted Tuesday, November 16, Belarusian border guards cleared the makeshift camps near the border by moving many of the migrants to shelter in a nearby warehouse, where they received aid from the Belarusian Red Cross, the UN Refugee Agency and other groups.
The Iraqi government also began to repatriate citizens who requested to leave. More than 400 Iraqi citizens who were transferred from Belarus' border to the capital Minsk were evacuated on an Iraqi Airways on Thursday, the Iraqi Transportation Ministry said in a statement.
The migrants -- most of whom are from the Middle East and Asia -- had been trying to get into Poland from the Belarusian side of the Bruzgi-Kuznica border crossing, and then travel from Poland deeper into Europe.
Charities say the migrants battled freezing weather and that there is a lack of food and medical attention, with reports of grueling conditions continuing to emerge.
Humanitarian groups had accused Poland's ruling nationalists of violating the international right to asylum by pushing people back into Belarus instead of accepting their applications for protection. Poland says its actions are legal.
The European Union, the United States and NATO have accused Belarusian leader Alexander Lukashenko of manufacturing a migrant crisis on the EU's eastern frontier as retribution for sanctions over human rights abuses. Lukashenko's government has repeatedly denied such claims, instead blaming the West for the crossings and treatment of migrants.