Police say attempts at illegal border crossing on rise, no danger yet of Balkan route reactivating

Over the past two months Croatian police have registered an increase in attempts by migrants to illegally cross the border from Serbia into Croatia, but there is still no danger that the Balkan migration route could become active again and have a major impact on Croatia, the Ministry of the Interior said on Thursday.

Outgoing Interior Minister Vlaho Orepic said that countries-members of the EU's border control agency Frontex have been exchanging information on a daily basis, that information was obtained from third countries and that police also used information obtained by satellite or radar, by vessel monitoring, etc.

The situation in Turkey and Greece is being followed, as are the measures taken by other EU countries, notably Hungary, said Orepic.

In the first eight months this year, police registered 2,395 illegal attempts to cross the border, the minister said, adding that the deployment of police forces and equipment, in line with risk analyses, confirmed that there was still no danger of the Balkan route becoming reactivated and having a major effect on Croatia.

A total of 1,415 migrants have been permanently accommodated and 2,524 temporarily accommodated in Serbia by this past Sunday. Most of the migrants in Serbia are staying in Horgos and Subotica and in camps in Sid, Adasevci and Pincipovac.

Most of those migrants are nationals of Pakistan, Afghanistan and Iraq. Hungary generally does not allow in nationals of those countries and sends them back to Serbia, after which some of them try to illegally cross the Serbian-Croatian border.

The Croatian border police are ready to respond to any increase in attempts at illegal border crossing both with manpower and equipment, Orepic said. As part of integrated border management and in coordination with other agencies, they will deal with all issues arising from an increased migration tide, he said.

Last update: Thu, 08/09/2016 - 10:38
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