BERLIN ( Associated Press) – Germany on Thursday hosted a meeting with representatives of the European Union and other European countries to stop migration through the so-called Balkan route.
“We want to protect those who are fleeing to us from war and political persecution,” said German Interior Minister Nancy Fesser. “At the same time, we are also taking decisive action against irregular migration … Our stated goal is to reduce the increase in irregular migration from the Balkan route.”
In recent months, more and more migrants have tried to reach the more prosperous countries of Western Europe via the Balkans, often paying thousands of euros (dollars) to help smugglers cross the border without valid travel documents. Pay.
The plan presented at the Berlin meeting involves aligning the visa policies of the Balkan states – Serbia, Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Montenegro and North Macedonia – with EU standards, combating migrant smuggling, ensuring effective border security and expedite deportation.
All those countries want to join the European Union, which now has 27 nations.
Serbia has come under particular pressure from EU countries to tighten their entry policies and no longer allow visa-free travel to citizens of India, Tunisia, Morocco and elsewhere. These people often used Serbia as a gateway to the European continent and moved west from there.
Although Germany has taken in more than a million Ukrainian refugees – mostly women and children – who entered legally since Russia invaded the Eastern European country on February 24, the government recently compared migrants from other parts. Took a very hostile tone. World.
Austria, the Czech Republic and other Central European countries have also reported an increase in arrivals of immigrants and asylum seekers.