Slovenian Army Begins Building Fence on Croatian Border

Total Croatia News

Slovenian army in position to start building the first parts of a wire fence on Croatia’s border.

During the night, Slovenian army began transporting wire and other material needed for construction of the fence at several locations on the border with Croatia. Around 7.30 am, trucks with wires arrived at Dobova. The first locations where the border will be closed are probably the areas of ​​Brežice and Zavrče. At Brežice, according to unofficial sources, the works should start during the afternoon. Local authorities and the police department in Novo Mesto say they have not received any information. British news agency Reuters reported that trucks with fence have arrived this morning to the area of Veliki Obrež near Harmica. Reuters photographer saw a lot of soldiers and police officers in the village, reports Vecernji List on November 11, 2015.

Yesterday, Slovenian government announced its intention to set up a fence to control the influx of a large number of refugees from the Middle East who enter the country through Croatia. During the news conference announcing the decision, Slovenian Prime Minister Miro Cerar tried to avoid the word “fence”. He rather talked about “technical barriers” to control the flow of immigration. He did not provide details on these “temporary measures”, which include the military and the police, calling them confidential. He added that the decision is aimed at preventing a humanitarian disaster in Slovenia. The fence does not mean closing the border, but only directing migrants to the reception points, he stressed.

Croatia will become the only member of the EU fenced by two of its neighbouring countries, also members of the EU. Some Croatians fear that Croatia could become a hot-spot for refugees, especially after yesterday’s announcement by Germany that all refugees, including Syrians, who entered the country after 21 October will be returned to the country where they first entered the EU, with the exception of Greece. This decision may be linked with the news that Germany wants reception centres to be formed along the Western Balkans migrant route.

Croatian government reacted to the news yesterday evening with the following statement: “Croatian Prime Minister Zoran Milanović talked today with Slovenian Prime Minister Miro Cerar about the refugee crisis and the recent decisions of the Slovenian Government on the protection of the Slovenian border. The prime ministers have agreed to continue cooperation between the two countries in regards with the flow of migrants and refugees. The Croatian Government will take all necessary measures to protect the interests of Croatia. Croatian citizens can be certain that the Government is prepared to respond to any situation.”

“Ask Cerar what he is constructing”, Croatian Interior Minister Ranko Ostojić said and added that Croatia is not violating the agreement recently reached in Brussels by the heads of governments of the countries which are on the Western Balkan migrant route.

Slovenia will continue to accept migrants from Croatia, but Cerar would not specify how many. The decision will, obviously, be arbitrary. “We will accept them as many as we can, in order to transport them to Austria”, Cerar said. While Prime Minister Cerar was conciliatory towards Croatia, Slovenian Interior Minister Vesna Györkös Žnidar said “that Croatia is informing us when it will send us migrants, but Slovenia cannot influence how many of them are coming”. The fence should obviously change that.


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