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English19/03/2019

MARCETA: MIGRANTS IN BiH AND SERB RETURNEES IN FBiH ARE IN SAME POSITION

 

DRVAR, March 19 /SRNA/ - The status of migrants in Bosnia and Herzegovina and Serb returnees in the Federation of BiH is the same - both are in a bad position, they are “roaming around,” looking for a job and better life, Mile Marceta, head of the Steering Board of the umbrella association of Serbs in the FBiH, told Srna.

 

Marceta believes neither the former nor the latter are welcome.

"The life of the Serbs in the FBiH, who are majority population in Drvar, Bosansko Grahovo and Glamoc, is extremely hard. They are not hired by state institutions, there is no infrastructure, and not a single kilometre of roads has been paved. They do not have any mobile network coverage; there is no water supply, no power supply in some villages. This shows how Serbs are received in their pre-war towns and how welcome they are, just like the migrants in BiH,” said Marceta.

Not more than three percent of Serbs live in the Federation of BiH and that is a fact, he said.

"Unofficial information that there are more migrants than Serbs in Krajina is upsetting. It is expected that a new wave of around 60,000 migrants will arrive in Krajina,” warns Marceta.

Marceta says BiH should not be a safe haven for migrants because it is an extremely poor country.

There is no control over migrants anymore and returnee Serb municipalities in the FBiH are very poor and unable to help themselves, let alone migrants, Marceta said.

Milan Bauk, a resident of the Serb village of Gornji Tiskovac which lies in the municipality of Bihac, told Srna they see migrants in the village every day, who are trying to get across to Croatia.

The local residents report the migrants to the border police who, he said, do not go to check it out.

"I personally am not afraid of migrants walking by our houses every day, but the village is populated by mostly the elderly who are afraid of them,” said Bauk.

There have been cases of break-ins too, he said.

"There is some hay underneath my house, migrants sleep there. Houses in the village are mostly abandoned and owners who do not live here even put up bars on their windows to prevent migrants from breaking in,” said Bauk.

Spokesman of the Livno Canton Ministry of Internal Affairs Ivica Vrdoljak has told Srna the number of reports on migrants observed in the canton has lately dropped.

"Between December and February, around 60 migrants were registered in the Livno Canton,” Vrdoljak said and added that the migrants had been reported to the Foreigners’ Office and referred to admission centres.

An employee of the BiH Border Police who wanted to remain anonymous told Srna that Croatia’s border police return migrants from the Sibenik-Knin County to the villages Gornji Tiskovac and Donji Tiskovac in BiH.

BiH Border Police spokeswoman Sanela Dujkovic told Srna on an earlier occasion that the region Drvar-Bosansko Grahovo-Donji Tiskovac had not been listed as a common route of an illegal crossing of the border with Croatia. /end/ds