Slovenia to Remove Razor-Wire Fence from Border with Croatia?

Total Croatia News

With the Balkan migrant route closed, the fence makes even less sense.

Slovenia is ready to remove the razor wire from the border with Croatia. This was reportedly promised by Slovenian Prime Minister Miro Cerar to his Croatian counterpart Tihomir Orešković. The two prime ministers talked last week in Brussels on the sidelines of the EU-Turkey summit, reports Večernji List on March 21, 2016.

The deadline for the removal of the fence, which Slovenia constructed in fear of the migrant wave, is not known, but it is expected that it could happen in the next two weeks. The Western Balkan migrant route is now closed, so there is no need for additional protection. This would finally solve one of the open issues which have been burdening relations between the two countries since November. Croatia claims that some parts of the fence were actually constructed on Croatian territory, and the entire fence complicates the daily life of Croatian citizens in the border areas.

The Croatian Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs has so far sent eight protest notes to Slovenia demanding that the razor wire be removed from Croatian territory. Due to the Slovenian fence, Croatian government also wrote to the European Commission. Prime Minister Tihomir Orešković went to Ljubljana in January to speak with Slovenian Prime Minister as his first foreign visit. He spoke informally with Cerar and they agreed that the two counties should cooperate in solving the issue of the migrant crisis, which was later demonstrated by synchronized measures which reduced the number of migrants on the route.

The usefulness of the razor wire to control migrant crisis was questionable from the very start, but Slovenia insisted on it, calling it with a euphemism “technical obstacle”. It constructed some 155 kilometres of wire fence along the Croatian border, even in those areas, such as Istria, where no migrants have ever been seen. The people in both countries, local politicians, intellectuals, and activists, criticized the fence, but Slovenia remained firm, until now it seems. The closing down of the migrant route has lifted the formal reason why Slovenia insisted on it.


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