“I responsibly claim that the migrants’ crisis is under our control,” Bosnia and Herzegovina’s (BiH) Minister of Security Dragan Mektic told reporters at the press conference on Friday in Banja Luka, some 190 kilometres northwest of the capital Sarajevo.
Mektic called an emergency press conference after an incident happened during the transfer of 270 migrants from the capital Sarajevo where they were living under the improvised tents, to refugee centre Salakovac near the city of Mostar, some some 130 kilometers southwest from the capital. The incident happened when a police of Herzegovina-Neretva Canton prevented busses with migrants to enter the canton, but after three hours of emergency meetings of top officials in Sarajevo, migrants arrived to Salakovac.
Mektic recalled on the migrants’ crisis that hit BiH in previous months and on the fact that there are vulnerable categories, unaccompanied children and families with babies present here.
“These migrants, no matter they are illegally here, deserve to be treated in a humane manner. We are behaving in accordance of the laws of international community and conventions on the correct and humane manner,” Mektic said.
He recalled that some 270 migrants were taken from tents, devastating objects, and transferred to Salakovac where they will have basic needs for life, shelter, food, water, and will be put under the ministry’s control.
He added that BiH security ministry has recently taken a series of actions and concrete moves to stop the illegal migrations over BiH, including the additional number of police officers put at BiH border, resulting in a decreased number of migrants entering.
Mektic explained that four days ago, the daily number of migrants at the border was 150, and after BiH security ministry decision to increase number of police officers at the border, the number of migrants seeking to enter BiH fell to 20 daily.
Earlier in May this year, BiH’s Council of Ministers adopted the Draft Action Plan for Emergency Measures that encompasses five urgent measures aiming to “better border control, more effective fight against illegal migration, realization of readmission agreements, intensifying activities to prevent migrants’ smuggling and strengthening of asylum center capacities,” a press release stated.