LJUBLJANA, Slovenia (AP) — Slovenia’s government on Friday said that police officers from three other European nations will help patrol the border with Croatia that is part of a route used by migrants trying to reach Western Europe.
Five officers from Estonia, six from Lithuania and 10 from Poland will join Slovenia’s border troops, the country’s Interior Ministry said, according to the STA news agency. Joint patrols are expected to start next week.
The move is part of efforts by Slovenia’s right-wing Prime Minister Janez Jansa to boost border control as migration is expected to pick up pace during summer months. Jansa is an ally of staunchly anti-immigrant Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban.
Thousands of migrants wishing to reach wealthy EU nations have been stranded in nearby Balkan countries such as Serbia or Bosnia. Migrants pass through Croatia and Slovenia before moving on.
While both Croatia and Slovenia are EU member states, Croatia still is not part of the free-travel Schengen area. Countries along the so-called Balkan migrant route have tightened border controls after more than a million people entered Europe in 2015.
Follow AP’s global migration coverage at https://apnews.com/hub/migration
Copyright © 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, written or redistributed.