- Title: Bosnian local authorities to cut support for migrant camp
- Date: 21st October 2019
- Summary: RED CROSS WORKER DISTRIBUTING FOOD TO MEN MEN RECEIVING FOOD
- Embargoed: 4th November 2019 15:10
- Keywords: Bosnia and Herzegovina Bihac Vucjak migrant camp humanitarian crisis red cross refugees
- Location: VUCJAK AND BIHAC, BOSNIA AND HERZEGOVINA
- City: VUCJAK AND BIHAC, BOSNIA AND HERZEGOVINA
- Country: Bosnia and Herzegovina
- Topics: Asylum/Immigration/Refugees,Government/Politics
- Reuters ID: LVA002B21IREH
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Struggling with a rise in migrant arrivals, local Bosnian authorities in Bihac, near the Croatian border, said on Monday (October 21) they cannot continue spending money on the migrant camp located on the outskirts of the city.
Bihac's Mayor Suhret Fazlic said the cash-strapped town would have to stop providing food and water to migrants at Vucjak camp, where over 1,000 migrants have been steered to, to force national authorities in Sarajevo to tackle the problem.
"I don't want us to close the camps, but migrants are coming here to Bihac from the entire country, from all directions, the Serb Republic, from Croatia and want to cross to Croatia," Fazlic said.
The Vucjak camp, about eight km (five miles) from the border with Croatia, lacks running water and electricity and was built over a former landfill where land mines remain as a legacy of the 1990s wars triggered by the disintegration of Yugoslavia.
Over 40,000 migrants have entered Bosnia since 2018, of whom around 7,300 have settled in the northwest Bihac area, hoping to cross into nearby Croatia and go on to the affluent north and west of the EU.
The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe and the International Organization for Migration both criticized the conditions in the camp and urged Bosnia to close it and relocate the population to more appropriate facilities.
In July the EU pledged 14 million euros ($15.56 million) in aid for new shelters but the scheme has been held up by bickering among rival ethnic parties and anti-migrant rhetoric.
(Production: Suzana Sabljic, Dominik Starosz)
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