Bavaria's Interior Minister grateful to Croatia for protecting EU border

NEWS 24.10.2019 17:46
Source: Ilustracija

Bavaria's Minister of the Interior Joachim Herrman on Thursday thanked the Croatian police for protecting the European border but expressed concern over the growing number of illegal migrants along the Western Balkan route saying that the situation in the autumn of 2015 must not be repeated in Bavaria or Germany.

“I thank our Croatian colleagues for protecting the European border (…) and congratulate Croatia on the European Commission’s green light regarding the fulfillment of technical conditions to access the Schengen Area,” Herrman said after a meeting with the Croatian Minister of the Interior, Davor Bozinovic.

The two ministers agreed that cooperation between Bavarian and Croatian police is essential and Herrman added that Bavaria considers that Croatia is positively controlling the border.

He expressed concern about the growing number of illegal migrants passing through Greece, Albania, North Macedonia and Bosnia and Herzegovina, and the very serious situation in those countries.

“This increased number is very concerning. We have clear instructions that the situation of the autumn of 2015 must not be repeated in Bavaria or Germany,” Herrman underscored.

Bozinovic said that the Croatian police were successfully withstanding all the challenges to protect Croatia’s border and the external border of the European Union.

“I presented an overview of the situation on the Eastern Mediterranean and Western Balkan route that there is increased pressure on the EU border and that with the help of European institutions the Croatian police are successfully withstanding all those challenges,” Bozinovic underlined.

“Confirmation of our very efficient work to protect the Croatian border and external Union border is the decision that the European Commission made two days ago regarding the fulfillment of the technical conditions to join the Schengen Area,” he added.

The European Commission said on Tuesday that Croatia had met the conditions for joining the Schengen Area and asked the Council of the EU to include Croatia in the area without internal border controls.

The EC added that Croatia would need to continue working on the implementation of all ongoing actions, in particular its management of the external borders, to ensure that these conditions were met.

European Commissioner for Migration, Home Affairs and Citizenship Dimitris Avramopoulos told a press conference in Zagreb on Wednesday that with Croatia as a member of the Schengen Area, the EU could face migration and security challenges better.