Since the local migrant reception centres are full, hundreds of migrants have found refuge in the woods in Bosnia’s eastern Una-Sana Canton (USK) where they are facing terrible living conditions and the situation is only getting worse as the weather is getting colder.
N1 spoke to the migrants currently staying in the woods between the town of Velika Kladusa and the Miral migrant centre.
The migrants have put together dozens of tents from canvases. Between six and eight migrants are staying in one tent at a time. They collect branches in the area to use as firewood and have no access to running water. One person cooks for all others in a tent.
“It’s not good, but many people cook here, you can see where we are sleeping,” a migrant from Pakistan said.
“A man gave me some food and a jacket, he helped me,” another one, from Bangladesh, added.
Since the beginning of 2018, the number of migrants passing through Bosnia has drastically increased. The country became a significant transit point for the thousands of migrants after numerous surrounding countries closed their borders.
The migrants aim to reach EU countries through Bosnia and Croatia. Croatian border police, however, often turn them away from the border and back into Bosnia.
The northwestern USK, near Croatia’s border, is affected the most by the situation.