If Germany Stops Receiving Refugees, Croatia Could Close Its Borders

By 7 October 2015

The latest from the migrant crisis in Croatia.

In the past three weeks, Croatia has accepted more than 125,000 migrants, or on average about 6,000 people a day. So far, the cost of the whole operation is about 22 million kuna, said interior minister Ranko Ostojić speaking on Wednesday morning for the Croatian Radio, reports Vecernji List on October 7, 2015.

Croatia will receive 5 million euros in emergency financial assistance from European funds, which will cover about two months of expenses, not including the transport of refugees from Opatovac to Hungary, since the EU does not want to cover transport costs, the minister said. He added that there are other funds available as well.

During the past three weeks, since the refugees began crossing into Croatia from Serbia, 125,877 migrants have entered Croatia. In the Opatovac reception centre, there are currently 1,877 people. Almost all refugees leave Croatia within 24 hours, and so far only six migrants have asked for asylum in Croatia.

The minister added he does not expect a reduction of inflow, given the number of migrants who are crossing from Macedonia to Serbia. At the moment, he said, the camps in Greece are being emptied, and this is a race against time, given the message that Germany will perhaps close its doors and that stricter control at the Turkish-Greek border will be implemented. There is also a plan for "hot spots" to be created in Greece where migrants will wait for years for their requests to be solved.

If Germany were to no longer accept refugees and if Hungary were to close its doors, then Croatia would also stop accepting refugees, said the minister responding to question what would happen if Germany were to stop accepting refugees. In that case, Croatia could possibly continue with the transit and make an agreement with Slovenia which border crossings will be used, but Croatia will see what will happen next, he said. He repeated that Croatia will not become a "hot spot".

According to data published on the website of the Ministry of Interior, 6,370 migrants entered Croatia yesterday through border crossings Bapska and Tovarnik. They were transported during the day to the Hungarian border by trains. From midnight to 9 am today, 1,398 migrants entered Croatia.