Hungary's new law allows it to return migrants to Serbia

Hungarian police has been allowed to send back illegal migrants detained within eight kilometers of the country's southern border toward Serbia.

Source: Reuters, Tanjug
(Getty Images, file, illustration purposes)
(Getty Images, file, illustration purposes)

A new law to this effect was adopted on Monday, stating that its aim was to allow authorities "to escort back across the gates of the border defense facility third-country nationals who are in Hungary illegally and who were detained within eight kilometers of the border."

Reuters is reporting that while Serbian officials were "not immediately available for comment," UNHCR said the legislation would only "exacerbate the situation of those waiting to be able to submit an asylum application."

Hungary's barbed wire fence along the border with Serbia and Croatia built last year "helped to reduce sharply the flow of migrants from the hundreds of thousands who last year moved up from the Balkans towards northern Europe, especially Germany," Reuters said.

The agency noted that migrants are still arriving to Hungary's border with Serbia, where two transit zones had been set up. The country received 19,140 asylum applications this year, while "more than 14,000 migrants have crossed its southern borders illegally according to government data."

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