Una-Sana Canton still bears the burden of grappling with illegal migrant camps

Una-Sana Canton still bears the burden of grappling with illegal migrant camps

BIHAĆ, October 26 (FENA) – Members of the Operational Task Force for the Situation with Migrants in the Una-Sana Canton (USC) at today’s meeting analyzed the problem of improvised, illegal migrant camps and uncoordinated activities of certain international humanitarian organizations, as well as the problem of financing long-term engagement of police officers in this situation.

“Improvised, illegal migrant camps, which currently house several hundred migrants, are primarily a problem due to inadequate living conditions and accommodation for these people. It is inadmissible for families with children to stay in the open air on these cold days.

People from the largest such camp in Velika Kladuša have already been relocated to official camps and humane conditions on three occasions, but most of them returned to that location on their own initiative due to the proximity of the border with the Republic of Croatia.

We also have the problem of uncoordinated actions of certain international organizations, which completely independently, practically keep such camps alive. Their activities are not coordinated with the Red Cross, the International Organization for Migration (IOM), or local and state authorities,” explained the Prime Minister of the USC Mustafa Ružnić.

The problem in the area of ​​Bihać should be solved with the recent opening of the Migrant Center “Lipa”, and today it was requested that migrants from public areas in Velika Kladuša be relocated to the center Ušivak in Sarajevo.

“The problem of electricity supply at the Lipa campsite should be completed in two weeks, which will create all the preconditions for opening an accommodation center for 1,500 people. We have also been informed that there are more than 400 available beds at the Ušivak center, so we are asking for help and relocation of people from Velika Kladuša to that camp,” Ružnić added.

The problem of financing the field engagement of police officers in the situation with migrants has also been raised, given that so far everything has been exclusively at the expense of the cantonal budget.

“We can no longer bear the cost of all field services of our police officers alone. Earlier, a Memorandum of Cooperation was signed with the International Organization for Migration (IOM), UNHCR and other international organizations, but the costs of all services are still exclusively a burden on our budget. Today, we have clearly said that if this unfair approach and distribution of funds does not change, the USC MoI will no longer provide services other than mandatory interventions as of November 1,” said the Prime Minister of the Una-Sana Canton.

It was also confirmed that the number of service users in the temporary reception center “Miral” in Velika Kladuša has been reduced to 380, and that the authorities are working towards shutting down this center completely.

Also, the current ban on the provision of migrant transport services was emphasized, this time with an emphasis on public transportation.