Tuzla Canton authorities denied allegations of forming a shelter for migrants, who have been arriving in this northeastern Bosnian town lately and occupying public areas.
According to cantonal government, Prime Minister Denijal Tulumovic never said that “the Government of Tuzla Canton will by end of the next month form a reception centre which will host the refugees who ended up in Tuzla while seeking for a better life.”
The statement that was allegedly delivered after the meeting with the European Union Delegation was, the Government said, misinterpreted.
“What was said during the press conference on October 24, following the meeting with Head of the Rule Section at the Office of EU Special Representative/EU Delegation Margriet Prins and Coordinator for Quick Response Fabrice Martin, was that the Tuzla Canton Government and Prime Minister Tulumovic personally proposed facilities and space for setting up a temporary reception centre, with the capacity of 100 to 150 persons, but that local self-government units gave no consent for that,” the Government said on Tuesday reiterating that the Prime Minister never obliged to establish a temporary centre for accommodation of migrants.
“The Government of Tuzla Canton understands the situation and completely sympathises with a difficult situation that migrants are in, especially bearing in mind the upcoming winter, so we got involved because of our social awareness and are trying to find the best solution acceptable for everyone,” the Government said.
About 10,000 migrants passed through Tuzla since the beginning of last year. The town is for many of them not only a place of transit since they lack the money to continue their trip.
They mostly sleep on pavements near the bus station with local volunteers providing them with food and blankets.