Bosnian police officers preventing migrants to cross the border in Izacici near Bihac, on Bosnia's border with Croatia. Credit: ANSA/AP/AMEL EMRIC
Bosnian police officers preventing migrants to cross the border in Izacici near Bihac, on Bosnia's border with Croatia. Credit: ANSA/AP/AMEL EMRIC

Tension has risen in Bosnia on the situation of migrants seeking to reach the European Union. On Monday, about 200 migrants tried to cross into Croatia but were stopped by the police. Meanwhile, protests continue in Bihac.

About two hundred migrants sought on Monday to cross the border between Bosnia and Croatia at the Maljevac crossing in Velika Kladusa. They were stopped by the Bosnian police 200 meters from the border, where Croatian police had also been deployed, report Bosnian media. This marks the third attempt by the migrants, after ones in May and June, to force their way from Bosnia into Croatia and the European Union. 


No acts of violence seen 

No violent incidents were recorded during the attempt and the migrants later returned to the Trnovi camp. In the afternoon, a group of migrant families - 89 adults with children - left the Sedra hotel in Cazin and walked towards the Izacic border crossing in Bihac, northwestern Bosnia-Herzegovina, about 30 kilometers away. Their intentions are not clear. 

Meanwhile, protests by Bihac residents continue. The local population had in recent days taken to the streets to demand that the authorities be taken outside of the city center and that state bodies intervene more effectively to step up security, which they say is insufficient both for residents and for the migrants. There are about 10,000 migrants between Velika Kladusa and Bihac, without adequate surveillance systems. ''The migrant crisis will not be solved in Bihac,'' the town's mayor said. ''It will be solved on the Drina River'', which acts as a natural border between Bosnia and Serbia. 

The situation in Bihac 

In recent days, thousands of protestors gathered in front of a reception center calling for the authorities to intervene to resolve what they claim is a crisis getting worse by the day. They say that there is no space to receive refugees nor adequate means to help them and that this fosters tension between migrants and the local population. 

In Sarajevo, meanwhile, the media reports that an Iranian was seriously injured in a brawl that broke out between migrants. Bosnia has become a transit country with the springing up of a new Balkan route that - in the place of Macedonia and Serbia - goes through Turkey, Greece, Albania, Montenegro, and Bosnia towards Croatia, Slovenia and other EU countries in Western Europe. 
 

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