"Balkan route is not closed - and world should know it"

The current situation on Serbia's northern border with Hungary shows that the Balkan migrant route cannot be considered closed.

Source: Tanjug
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(Getty Images, file)
(Getty Images, file)

State Secretary in the Serbian Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs Nenad Ivanisevic made this statement for the country's state broadcaster RTS on Wednesday.

"The Balkan route is not closed, if it were, this topic would not be on the agenda. Minister (Aleksandar) Vulin and I were at (border crossing) Horgos last night, where the situation was the same as two days before, considering that around 100 migrants are on a hunger strike with no success at all, considering that Hungary has sealed its border hermetically," he said.

Ivanisevic described the migrants, who wish to cross into Hungary, as being "completely desperate." Several months ago they left their countries, he continued, and now "due to being badly informed about the border with Hungary" find themselves at that border, with no hope of crossing it.

He added it was "important to talk to them - and that the state of Serbia is providing everything they need to be protected, including medical assistance."

According to Ivanisevic, Serbia's authorities want to tell the international public that the Balkan migrant route has not been closed, "that these people did not come out of nowhere," and that Belgrade want to discuss "how to take them into legal channels."

"We want help from our colleagues in the EU. By the end of the week we will adapt a document containing the needs in this phase of the refugee crisis, and will send it to donors and ask that they get involved in solving this issue," Ivanisevic concluded.

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