Croatian Interior Minister says economic migrants make up only 1.6% of refugee wave

Croatian Interior Minister Ranko Ostojic said on Monday that the transit of refugees through Croatia was proceeding without difficulties, that there was no problem with stopping the flow of economic migrants who, according to Ostojic, make up only 1.6% of all migrants.

On Sunday, 6,305 people passed through Croatia, Ostojic told the press in the refugee transit centre in Slavonski Brod, adding that so far a total of 435,635 persons have passed through Croatia on the so-called refugee route since mid-September. He said only 1.6% of them were economic migrants.

The minister also explained what intensified EU border control meant, which was one of the three topics discussed at a meeting of EU interior ministers on Friday.

"It was agreed that police officials would conduct a systematic control of all passports. Given that Croatia is the external EU border, this is causing delays," Ostojic said and asked citizens to have understanding. One of the measures discussed by ministers in Brussels is intensified gun control and passenger control on EU flights.

Asked about a possible one-off joint registration of refugees on the route, Ostojic said it was possible, adding however that such practice was not in accordance with regulations of the Schengen border control regime and therefore not realistic.

Last update: Mon, 23/11/2015 - 16:06

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