President: Croatia Will Not Allow Migrants to Pass through Its Territory

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President Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović also spoke about situation in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Croatian President Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović said on Tuesday in New York that, if a new migrant wave reaches Croatian borders, Croatia would not let migrants pass through its territory since borders of neighbouring countries are closed and it needed to protect its territory. The President added that Croatia would still give assistance to all those who needed it, reports on September 21, 2016.

The President, who is in New York for the session of the UN General Assembly, said that Croatia last year let migrants pass to other countries because there were no fences at the borders with Slovenia and Hungary, but the borders are now closed. “It turned out that over 85 percent of them were economic migrants and not genuine refugees. It will be very hard to solve this problem without a common European agreement, and without an agreement with the countries that have ultimately been the key when it comes to messages which made migrant come to ​​Europe. However, we have to be prepared and not depend on anyone else. We should be ready to protect our territory and borders, and to help everyone who needs help”, she concluded.

President Grabar-Kitarović also spoke about the situation in Bosnia and Herzegovina, with regards to a referendum which is scheduled to take place in the Republika Srpska on 25 September. “The referendum is contrary to the Dayton Peace Agreement, and the international community and relevant international bodies have rejected it. I hope that the referendum will not happen”, said the President.

She pointed out that Croatia firmly supported sovereignty and territorial integrity of Bosnia and Herzegovina in which Croats, Serbs and Bosnians should be the three constituent peoples. Asked if she was in contact with Dragan Čović, a Croatian member of the Presidency of Bosnia and Herzegovina, she said that she was in constant contact with him and added that she would also discuss the issue with the Chairman of the Presidency Bakir Izetbegović who is also in New York.


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