Croatia to stop taking refugees if transit to Germany stopped


Interior Minister Ranko Ostojic said on Tuesday that Croatia would stop accepting refugees if their transit towards Germany was stopped.

Speaking to the press at the refugee transit centre in Slavonski Brod, he said Germany continued to receive about 6,500 refugees daily and that 405,530 had passed through Croatia since mid-September.

Ostojic reiterated that a suspect in Friday’s terrorist attacks in Paris had passed on the refugee route through Croatia, that Croatian police did not have information that would indicate that he was suspicious, and that he then entered Hungary and passed through another two Schengen Area countries.

“I’ve been saying from the start that among the refugees could be a person using the refugee flow, but people are also fleeing the terror which happened in Paris. One should clearly distinguish between criminal terrorists and those fleeing war,” Ostojic said.

He said security measures in Croatia had been at a high level from the start and that refugees were being checked to ensure the safety of Croatian citizens as well as of refugees and persons working at the refugee centre.

Ostojic said a meeting in Ljubljana today was not being attended by ministers from all countries participating in the agreement on the refugee crisis. He said enough time has passed since October 25 for all to implement the agreed refugee transit standards.

He said a meeting of interior ministers, in the wake of the Paris terrorist attacks, was convened for Friday in Brussels to discuss measures to prevent new attacks, but that the transit of refugees was not on the agenda.

He also commented on terror threats coming via Internet portals from Bosnia and Herzegovina, saying that Croatia had intensified communication with the neighbouring country since the terrorist attack on the offices of Charlie Hebdo magazine in Paris and the murder of a policeman in Zvornik, Bosnia. He said those threats were not nonsense so they were been investigated by the security and intelligence agency.