About a hundred residents of Slavonski Brod on Thursday evening staged a protest rally in the centre of that eastern Croatian city against the government's plan to set up a winter reception centre for migrants in the local industrial zone, insisting that the refugee camp would hurt the industrial image of the city and deter investors.
"We are not afraid of those people (migrants), but the decision (on the centre) should have been preceded by a public debate, with residents included in the decision-making process," one of the protest organisers, Bozena Rorzercer, told the crowd.
Another protester said that Slavonski Brod should have developed an image of a new university centre, rather than becoming a hot spot for refugees.
The rally lasted less than an hour, after which the demonstrators dispersed peacefully. Of prominent local politicians, only Boro Grubisic, a parliamentarian of the regional HDSSB party, was noticed in the rally.
The work on the winter transit centre in Slavonski Brod is nearing completion. It will be housed in storage facilities in the industrial zone.