Thousands of Migrants in Bosnia, Waiting to Enter Croatia

Total Croatia News

ZAGREB, June 20, 2018 – Bosnia’s police agency estimates that currently there are about 2,500 illegal migrants in the country who intend to continue on their way to some Western European country, Bosnia and Herzegovina’s Security Minister Dragan Mektić said during a debate on the refugee crisis in the country’s parliament.

Since the start of the year, the number of registered illegal entries is a little more than 6,600 migrants and about 4,000 have managed to leave the country and have attempted to continue on their way through Croatia to some other European Union member state.

Minister Mektić said that border police are facing a lot of difficulties in this situation because there is still a shortage of at least 500 police officers whose jobs are foreseen but there isn’t sufficient funding to employ them. “We don’t have the money for that. We have a plan, but no-one cares about that plan,” Mektić told lawmakers, adding that in the existing circumstances, Bosnia essentially depends on assistance from abroad, which is lacking for now.

The motion for the debate on the migrant crisis was put forward by HDZ BiH MPs who insisted discussing events that occurred in May, when a conflict between various security agencies almost erupted over attempts to transfer a large group of migrants who were located in Sarajevo to an asylum centre outside Mostar. Herzegovina-Neretva Canton police temporarily stopped the buses transporting the migrants which were allowed to continue on their way only after hours of negotiations.

HDZ MP Predrag Kožul on Wednesday said that the influx of migrants has caused the system of authority in the country to collapse and that it was obvious the state isn’t functioning. He insisted on a comprehensive report from the Council of Ministers regarding this problem.

Another HDZ MP, Nikola Lovrinović, accused Mektić of unlawful behaviour because during the crisis of transferring the illegal migrants, Mektić threatened with arrests. This led to an exchange of insults between Mektić and Lovrinovic and almost escalated to an incident.


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