Serbia tries to stem continued Balkan migrant flow

AP News
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Posted: Aug 15, 2016 9:50 AM
Serbia tries to stem continued Balkan migrant flow

ZAJECAR, Serbia (AP) — Serbian border guards say they have prevented over 2,000 migrants from crossing from Bulgaria and have caught 24 people smugglers in less than a month.

Serbia has recently deployed joint army and police patrols on its border with Bulgaria where migrants have been coming in through illegal routes, mostly guided by people smugglers.

Most of the migrants want to cross to Hungary before continuing to wealthier EU states.

Balkan nations closed their borders to migrants in March.

Serbia's military spokesman Jovan Krivokapic said Monday that 2,275 mostly Syrians, Afghans and Pakistanis have been turned back since the joint patrols were introduced on July 22. He says 454 migrants who were caught inside Serbia were transferred to refugee centers.