Deputy Security Minister: Calling for conflict with Croatia is irrational

NEWS 12.09.2019 18:33
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Source: N1

When Security Minister Dragan Mektic told N1 that Bosnia will prevent Croatian police from entering the country “even at the cost of a conflict” he was not expressing the stance of the country, but only his own, Mektic’s Deputy, Mijo Kresic, said on Thursday.

Mektic made the statement as he commented on frequent reports alleging that Croatian police crossing the border into Bosnia in order to push back migrants trying to reach the EU.

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“We will stand at our border and will not let any foreign military or police force enter Bosnia and Herzegovina,” he said, adding that authorities are obligated to protect the territorial integrity of the country.

“We cannot just stand by and calmly watch as others pass through. My message to the Croatian side is: We will stop it even if the price for it is conflict,” Mektic stressed.

But Kresic said that “that is not the stance of Bosnia and Herzegovina.”

“That was a private statement by Mr. Mektic,” he said.

“Obviously there is a lack of cooperation and dialogue. With our neighbour, that is, with the EU, we need to find common solutions which will work toward a more intense implementation of the agreement on joint activities on the state border,” Kresic said.

“Calling for any kind of conflict, especially an open conflict, is irrational,” he said.

He added that the migrant situation has become “chaotic” and that Bosnia does not follow EU guidelines on the issue.

Kresic said that in Bosnia there are “illegal migrants, smugglers and organised crime.”

“I’m afraid that certain institutions only support that organised crime,” he .adding that he expects Bosnia’s eastern border to be closed because of the announcement that a new wave of migrants is approaching.

“It has become clear that we will have to engage additional forces and close the border. That is the first step,” he concluded.