Migrant Who Entered Croatia Hiding Under Bus Returned to Serbia

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The number of illegal migration incidents increases.

A young migrant from Iraq, who entered Croatia hiding in the undercarriage of a bus which was driving from Belgrade to Zagreb, had been returned to Serbia, Croatian Interior Minister Davor Božinović confirmed on Friday, reports Večernji List on December 30, 2017.

“He has already been handed over to Serbian police officers, that is, he has been returned to the Republic of Serbia,” Božinović said, explaining that everything was done on the basis of a readmission agreement with the Republic of Serbia. Asked whether the 21-year-old, who was arrested without documents after entering Croatia and hiding for hours under the bus, had asked for asylum, the minister explained that, “to receive asylum, the first and basic precondition is legal entry into Croatia.”

“The Republic of Croatia is implementing the EU policy. At this moment, we have received 40 Syrians who came from camps in Turkey. They are in the process of resolving their status, obtaining asylum and will be integrated into Croatian society. Also, 77 persons have been moved from Italy and Greece, and this is the way to implement European legislation, to implement national legislation and to solve the status issues of migrants,” Božinović said.

He added that the Croatian border police had constantly been improving its capabilities regarding border protection. “We are undertaking activities financed from our own funds, but we are also beneficiaries of EU funds which help us reduce the possibility of illegal entry into Croatia. That is an integral part of European policy. It is in European interest to have as few illegal migrants as possible in EU member states.”

“Croatia has the longest external border in the EU, and therefore our communication with the European Commission and our partners is very intense. I think we have improved our mutual understanding and that Croatia can count on even more resources in comparison to what it has already received, which is substantial,” the Minister said. Asked if the police were preventing migrants from seeking asylum, Božinović said that all police forces in the world forbid the illegal crossing of borders.

As for the mother of the deceased migrant girl who was recently hit by a train, Božinović said that she hadn’t sought asylum. “She entered lawfully because the Croatian police allowed her to enter with the child who was killed in the tragic event. However, these people were not in the Republic of Croatia, and this incident did not happen in the Republic of Croatia. In this exceptional situation, the Croatian police reacted and transported the mother with the child, but not the whole group of migrants, to the closest location where it was possible for an ambulance to arrive.”

“Unfortunately, the child died. The mother did not ask for asylum, but asked to be returned to the group with whom she approached the Croatian border,” Božinović said.

Translated from Večernji List.


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