Cerar says will defend Slovenian interests, safety; might put up fence on Croatian border

Slovenian Prime Minister Miro Cerar said on Wednesday he was willing to do everything to protect Slovenia's national interests in the migrant crisis and that he did not rule out putting up a fence on the Croatian border if Austria did so on the Slovenian border.

"As prime minister, I'm willing to do everything to protect Slovenia's interests, the peace and safety of our people," he told reporters after a meeting of the National Security Council.

"We don't want walls in Europe, but if we are forced into doing it, we are ready to set up technical obstacles on our border with Croatia as early as tomorrow," Cerar said in the wake of news that Austria could set up kilometres of fence on the Sentilj/Spielfeld border crossing with Slovenia.

About 80,000 refugees have passed through Slovenia over the past 12 days and Austria has taken in most of them but, judging by announcements, this might change soon.

Cerar said he would do everything to protect Slovenian interests, while trying to humanely treat the migrants who wanted to continue their journey northwards, but that it would control their inflow so that things did not get out of hand.

If the agreements reached at the summit in Brussels on Sunday are not honoured and if Germany and Austria seal their borders, Slovenia is ready for tighter controls and "blacker scenarios." "If those commitments aren't honoured, it will be proof that the European policy isn't working and we'll have to gradually tighten border control measures to stop the refugee flow," Cerar said.

Last update: Tue, 08/12/2015 - 12:33

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