Slovenia put up fence to ensure organised reception of migrants


Slovenia has erected a wire fence only along sections of its border with Croatia to ensure the “organised” reception and transfer of migrants and has decided on this measure as a member of the European Union, European Transport Commissioner Violeta Bulc said on Friday after visiting a refugee centre in Dobova on the Slovenian-Croatian border.

I believe that Slovenia has decided to erect a wire fence to create conditions for the organised reception and transport of migrants. The prime minister has stressed several times that Slovenia is not closing its border and has also told this to European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker, Bulc said.

She said that Slovenia and Croatia were coping well with the migrant crisis. Trains are running, the police and volunteers are cooperating well. I believe this is the direction we should be going, she added.

Commenting on the moves by the governments in Ljubljana and Budapest, Bulc said that every dramatic situation provokes dramatic responses, noting that these are challenging times for the European Union.

This has never happened before. Europe does not have a tradition of receiving such huge numbers of refugees and we are now learning to cope with that, Bulc said.

Although the European Commission has come under severe criticism for failure to come up with a collective response to the migrant crisis, Bulc said that the Union is very efficient and has done an excellent job in a very short time.

In a space of just several weeks we have set up a framework within which we can respond. We have platforms on the basis of which we initiate dialogue. We may have spent too much time, but now we can find solutions, Bulc said.

Commenting on Austria’s plan to put up a fence on its border with Slovenia, Bulc said that everyone is considering various scenarios and this is one of them.

In Croatia, Interior Minister Ranko Ostojic said on Friday that EU Commissioner on Migration Dimitris Avramopoulos had confirmed to him that the Commission would support Croatia’s initiative to check the implementation of the Juncker Plan for the acceptance of refugees.

On the other hand, Ostojic said that Slovenia’s initiative for a meeting in Ljubljana was unacceptable because it would not solve anything. “As far as I know, Croatia too would be invited to this meeting, which would be attended by considerably fewer countries. That is absolutely unacceptable to Croatia. I think there is no reason to attend a meeting that can solve absolutely nothing, but we’ll see,” he told the press in the eastern town of Slavonski Brod.

Ostojic said he would consult with his colleagues in Serbia, who he said had told him about this initiative by Slovenian Interior Minister Vesna Gjerkes Znidar.