Croatia is ready to take in 550 migrants and can also provide for an additional 1064, Croatian Foreign Minister Vesna Pusic said on Wednesday after the European Commission unveiled a plan for the refugee crisis under which a total number of refugees who should be redirected from Greece, Italy and Hungary to Croatia is 1,614.
Foreign Minister Pusic recalled that the government had already adopted a decision on accommodating 550 migrants and Croatia could also take in 1064 more migrants, which means a total of 1614. Addressing the press, she explained the Zoran Milanovic cabinet could not yet discuss the new quota given that no decision at the European Union level had been made.
“It remains to be seen whether the states (EU members) will accede to the obligatory refugee quotas or if they will be for non-binding quotas,” the Croatian minister said. Pusic said that migrants needed help, and she called for cooperation with countries neighbouring the EU, primarily Turkey as well as Lebanon and Jordan, and Egypt that are “neighbours across the Mediterranean” and that have already received a huge number of refugees.
She called for assistance in administrative checks in the countries that have received huge numbers of migrants so as to establish who can apply for asylum and who cannot qualify for asylum status. The Croatian minister said it was urgent to eliminate the causes of large-scale departures of people from their homes in Middle East and northern Africa, and appealed for stopping the war in Syria and Iraq.