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migrant crisis

EU, Turkey meeting in Bulgaria next week


The leaders of the EU and Turkey will meet on March 26 at the Evksinograd residence in Varna, Bulgaria to discuss many issued as the Customs Union agreement, requirements of a signed migrant deal, the fight against terrorism and Turkey’s accession to the bloc. President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan will meet European Council President Donald Tusk, European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker and Bulgarian Prime Minister Boyko Borissov. The meeting will build on the previous leaders’ meeting that took place on May 25, 2017. On the Customs Union issue, the council has not given the required mandate to the European Commission to launch technical talks with Turkey because there is not the consensus of all members, Germany primarily. The Customs Union covers all industrial goods, but does not address agriculture (except processed agricultural products), services or public procurement right now.

In the meeting will be also discussed the implementation of the migrant deal. The migrant deal envisages a one-for-one formula under which failed asylum seekers in Europe are returned to Turkey while Syrian refugees are resettled in EU states in a quota system. Turkey was promised to be given the full amount of six billion euros in two parts. The first part, 3 billion euros, is to be fulfilled by 2018 and the European Commission said it will grant another 3 billion euros ($3.7 billion).  Furthermore, in Varna, the Turkish leader will reiterate Turkey’s candidacy for full membership to the bloc.

Migrant crisis in BiH is out of control

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The head of the SNSD (Alliance of Independent Social Democrats) Deputies Club in the House of Representatives of the Parliamentary Assembly of BiH, Staša Košarac, warned that the Ministry of Security does not take any steps to strengthen the borders of the country and prevent a more certain mass wave of migrants from risky countries that could enter during spring and summer. According to the data possessed by BiH authorities, states Košarac, several thousand migrants will try to come to BiH from Greece, through Albania and Montenegro, a new Balkan route that is becoming more and more active in BiH. He added that Mektić ignored warnings of police services and agencies operating in the Ministry of Security regarding BiH’s lack of capacity to accept a significant number of migrants, and daily deteriorating conditions at immigration centers. Most importantly, Košarac stressed that there are not enough people to control the inaccessible and porous border with Montenegro.

No real help from Frontex to face the migrant situation

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The European Union’s Border and Migration Control Agency Frontex closely monitors the situation in Bosnia and Herzegovina, but cannot significantly help. In order to be able to provide full-capacity assistance with a non-EU country, according to the new mandate, Frontex needs to have a bilateral agreement, which is at the moment missing with BiH. If an agreement is reached, Frontex has the right to carry out full-capacity executive operations in countries outside the EU, and this would give it the right to launch a mission to the country and send police officers with executive powers. Considering that there is no such agreement, last year BiH authorities agreed to establish two coordinating points: one at the Sarajevo airport and the other at the border crossing Zupca, near Trebinje.

BiH’s fight against human right’s violations


Peter Van der Auweraert, head of the International Organization for Migration (IOM) mission in BiH and the Minister for Human Rights and Refugees, Semih Borovac, met to discuss an adequate response to the migrant crisis and the increasing influx of migrants. A special emphasis was placed on the growing issue of Roma children smuggled to Europe, an issue that, according to Minister Borovac, will be faced in cooperation with Roma organizations in order to prevent it. Van der Auweraert has also praised the attitude of members of the Border Police of BiH towards migrants who have stated the respectful treatment they receive from border guards.

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