Answering questions from Twitter users on Tuesday evening, Minister of the Interior Ranko Ostojic said that there were no problems with the management of the migrant crisis in Croatia and that the Croatian authorities could register around 1,000 people in only one hour thanks to experienced staff and good equipment.
Croatia is a country that registers migrants. “Our registration system has not collapsed because we have well-trained teams and good equipment,” Ostojic said, reiterating that Croatia would not become a migrant hotspot.
Persons without papers are issued with an ID document and they must leave the country, the minister said.
He underlined that the Croatian authorities were treating migrants humanely and that Croatia should not be punished because of that.
Croatia is ready to accept the agreed quotas (for the reallocation and distribution of migrants) and we can start with the integration of 1,640 people but only 18 people have applied for asylum in Croatia so far. Migrants want to go to Germany, Sweden and Finland, Ostojic said, adding that of the total number of migrants who had passed through the country so far, 70% were from Syria and the rest from Iraq, Afghanistan and other countries.
Asked about the attitude of President Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic to migrants, which differs from his, Ostojic said that the president’s advisor Mate Granic had stated that Croatia was the most organised country of all the countries on the migrant route.
Asked about protection from terrorists in neighbouring countries, Ostojic said the best form of protection was cooperation with neighbouring countries’ authorities, adding that such cooperation already existed, with the assistance of Interpol. He warned that terrorists wanted to make people believe that all people fleeing war were terrorists, but treating those people humanely, without fences and tension, is a gurantee that they will be less prone to terrorism, Ostojic said, adding that Croatia had stepped up security measures after the January 2015 attack on the French satirical paper Charlie Hebdo.