If Bosnia’s western border to the EU remains closed for migrants, then the country will have to close its eastern border too, Bosnia’s prime minister said on Thursday.
The country will remain committed to the principles of humanity and international law when migrants seek asylum, but not many of their requests are sincere and Bosnia needs to protect its borders just like the EU has done, said Denis Zvizdic, the Chairman of Bosnia’s Council of Ministers, which is how the government is called.
“Migrants from EU countries are coming to Bosnia with the intent to return to the EU again. They come from Greece, and if reports that a large number of migrants are leaving Greece in May are true, then we really have to think about fully closing the Bosnian border,” he said.
Thousands have entered Bosnia on their way towards EU countries since the beginning of 2018. However, they got stuck there after surrounding countries closed their borders, particularly Croatia, Bosnia’s EU neighbour.
Migrants continue trying to enter the EU illegally but Croatian border police have reinforced the border to Bosnia and are turning them back.
Bosnia needs to resolve its issues with its neighbouring countries regarding the migrant flow, Zvizdic said, explaining that many Iranians enter Serbia as tourists and then cross over to Bosnia as migrants.
He also mentioned that Hungary and some other countries have offered to help Bosnia secure its border.