President Sends Letter to EU on Border Controls

By , 20 Apr 2017, 16:29 PM Politics
President Sends Letter to EU on Border Controls Source: N1

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The European Commission did not want to comment on the letter.

The European Commission does not have a special comment on the letter sent by Croatian President Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović on the recent problems with strict border controls. The EU is ready to assist all member states in implementing new measures of systematic border controls in order to meet the security targets and at the same time avoid negative effects on traffic flow, said a spokeswoman for the Commission on Thursday. “We have no specific comment on the letter. We have received it and will respond to it,” said spokeswoman Mina Andreev, reports Večernji List on April 20, 2017.

Spokeswoman Tove Ernst, in charge of internal affairs and migration, said the Commission was in constant contact with all the member states and was ready to help implement the new regulations in the best possible way. “At the Commission's initiative, we organized a meeting of the Border Working Group on 12 April. At that meeting, the Commission provided additional explanations on how member states should implement rules and procedures, and what member states should do if they want to move from systematic to targeted controls at certain border crossings and for a limited period of time. That must be based on risk assessment and should not jeopardize the overall security,” said Tove Ernst. She added that the next meeting was scheduled for 28 April.

Croatian President Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović sent a letter on Wednesday to presidents of the European Council, the European Parliament and the European Commission, warning the European leaders that Slovenia's use of stricter controls had caused long lines at border crossings. She urged them to facilitate the flow of people and goods on the Croatian borders.

President added that such action by Slovenia “gave rise in the Croatian public to the feeling that it is witnessing the implementation of earlier irresponsible announcements by certain Slovenian politicians who said that Slovenia could take measures towards Croatia and prevent the arrival of tourists as a means of coercion or retaliation, given Croatia's position on arbitration proceedings between Croatia and Slovenia.”

Prime Minister Plenković on Thursday commented on the situation following the entry into force of the new system of systematic checks of all passengers at border crossings. He announced that Croatia would use all possible means to resolve the problem at the border crossings and said that the strict application of the European regulations on border control for Croatia was “unsustainable.”

“For Croatia, as a country which is preparing to enter the Schengen Area and wants to make a contribution to the fight against terrorism, it is simply untenable to enforce such regulations on the border with other EU members,” said the Prime Minister.

“For us as a tourist country, in which tourism represents 18 percent of GDP, and for normal functioning of traffic and security, this situation cannot be acceptable,” said Plenković. He reminded that Croatia, due to long lines, had moved from systematic to targeted border controls. Hungary did the same, but Slovenia did not. “We will strive in a dialogue with Slovenian partners to change the regime,” said Plenković. "In any case, we will use all possible legal, institutional and political tools, through dialogue within the European Council, to solve this problem,” he stressed.

From Croatia with Madness

Croatia Traffic Info

  • Due to a traffic accident on the A3 Bregana-Lipovac motorway traffic is proceeding slowly in a 1 km long queue at Križ junction in direction Zagreb. The A1 Zagreb-Split-Ploče and A6 Rijeka-Zagreb motorways, the Pag bridge, as well as Dr. Franjo Tuđman bridge in Dubrovnik are open to all vehicle categories. Due to strong wind there is a traffic ban on double-decker buses, campervans and motorcycles on the following sections: -on the A7 motorway between Draga and Šmrika, -on the Krk-bridge, -on the DC8 Adriatic road between Bakar and Novi Vinodolski. There is an additional ban on delivery vehicles and vehicles with covered cargo area on the DC8 Adriatic road between Novi Vinodolski and Sveta Marija Magdalena. A1 MOTORWAY ZAGREB-SPLIT-PLOČE - On the A1 motorway there is a 4 km long queue at Lučko toll station in direction Zagreb. - Traffic is proceeding with difficulties between Posedarje junction and Sveti Rok tunnel in direction Zagreb. - Due to a traffic accident between Novigrad junction and Draganić service area traffic is proceeding slowly in direction Zagreb. A2 MOTORWAY ZAGREB-MACELJ There is a 2,5 km long queue on the A2 Zagreb-Macelj motorway at Trakošćan toll station in direction Slovenia. A3 MOTORWAY BREGANA-LIPOVAC There is a 2 km long queue on the A3 Bregana-Lipovac motorway at Bregana toll station in direction Slovenia. A7 MOTORWAY RUPA-DIRAČJE At Rupa border crossing in direction Slovenia there is a 700 m long queue. A8/A9 MOTORWAY IN ISTRIA - There is a 5 km long queue at the border crossings Kaštel und Plovanija in direction Slovenia. - There is a 2 km long queue at Učka tunnel in direction Rijeka. KRK BRIDGE Traffic is very dense on the Krk bridge: 3 km towards the island, 4 km in direction mainland. Roads are wet and slippery countrywide. Rockfalls and landslides are possible. Drivers are advised to adjust the driving speed to the road conditions and to keep the safety distance. Strong wind is blowing on the A1 motorway between Sveti Rok tunnel and Božići viaduct. The queues: on the A1 Zagreb-Split-Ploče there is some queueing traffic between Karlovac and Lučko in direction Zagreb at the toll station Lučko 1 km in direction Zagreb, an Demerje 500 m on the A2 Zagreb-Macelj at the toll station Trakošćan the queue is 3 km long in direction Slovenia at the border crossings Kaštel and Plovanija in Istria 7 km queueing traffic towards Slovenia on the A7 Rupa-Diračje on the state road towards the border crossing Pasjak 4 km The roads are occasionally wet and slippery in the northwestern parts of the country and in the Croatian Littoral. Driving restrictions: freight vehicles exceeding 7,5 t - Sunday, 20th of August; 12AM - 11PM Sections of the roads closed due to roadworks: -the DC29 from Novi Golubovec (DC29, DC35) -the DC502 Smilčić-Pridraga state road -ŽC5042 Višnjan-Tićan. Traffic is regulated by traffic signals/one road lane is free only: -on the DC1 state road in Knin, on the section Sučević-Otrić in Otrić -on the state road DC2 in Vukovar, (Kudeljarska and Priljevo street) -on the state road DC66 Pula- Raša bridge -on the state road DC206 Valentinovo-Petrovsko. With the sunny and dry weather, more and more cyclists and motorists are on the roads. Other vehicles (such as cars or trucks) should look carefully for bicyclists before turning left or right, merging into bicycle lanes and opening doors next to moving traffic. Check your mirrors and be aware of blind spots before turning. While at a stop sign or red light, make a complete stop in order to let bikers pass, and check for unseen riders. Respect the right of way of bicyclists because they are entitled to share the road with you. Cyclists are not immune to traffic violations: pay attention to red lights and practice arm signaling!
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  • Due to heavy traffic during the tourist season longer wait times are possible on most border crossings with Slovenia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia and Montenegro.
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  • The catamaran lines Mali Lošinj-Cres-Rijeka and Pula-Mali Lošinj-Zadar are suspended due to bad weather conditions.
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