- Saturday, November 14, 2015 2:40 PM
Skopje, 14 November 2015 (MIA) – In light of recent developments surrounding the refugee crisis, President Gjorge Ivanov has said he will convene the Security Council on Saturday evening.
“The Macedonian Army (ARM) has already raised the alarm saying more and more people are illegally crossing border crossings that are not marked. This requires special measures to be taken by ARM in order to find those who avoid to be registered. Their refusal to be registered raises suspicion that these people might not have good intentions,” President Ivanov stated after touring the country’s southern border.
According to him, the terrorist attacks in Paris will affect the refugee crisis as well.
“Since this morning, many countries are starting to take a different approach in dealing with the refugee issue and the matter of security and terrorist attacks… Security is being beefed all over the continent as we are also taking similar measures,” Ivanov stated.
As a result, he added, the Security Council is being convened this evening to review future activities and discuss all the current events.
“The Security Council will discuss the state of play noted by the Army in which over 8,500 are crossing the border illegally,” said Ivanov.
When asked whether Macedonia would build refugee camps, the President reiterated that the country had the capacity to receive 1,500 near its southern border and another 500 in the north.
“Macedonia will not be building refugee camps, it remains a transit zone. The events taking place today and yesterday are likely to change the policies of EU members, because obviously the corridor opened by refugees is now being used by both migrants and foreign terrorist fighters. I have personally asked FRONTEX to deploy its forces on the Greek-Macedonian border, because it is a European border, and to register those exiting the EU. The response was that the issue was still sensitive as it was being met by a negative public response in Greece. However, it is evident that Greece doesn’t want to register those who are leaving the country,” President Ivanov told reporters.
Asked what had been implemented since the Brussels Summit, Ivanov said that Macedonia so far had received only EUR 90,000 in support from Italy for the Crisis Management Center.
“Italy has said it will provide hundreds of thousands of euros in assistance, but to the best of my knowledge the EU financial assistance hasn’t been received yet… We need the assistance now and it has been publicly revealed that the country spends one million euros a month for the army and police while they are deployed to secure the borders, without taking into account the costs of humanitarian organizations and NGOs,” noted Ivanov.
Asked what kind of measures would be taken by Macedonia following announcements by several countries on border closures, the President elaborated the move was aimed at directing the refugees towards registration points.
“Because the refugees fail to show up at registration points, which is also reported in Macedonia, every country is taking its own measures. Today’s touring of the border is organized in order to see all the porous points used by the migrants to enter the country. The Army and police will propose measures that should be taken. The situation is being monitored, all relevant institutions follow their jurisdictions according to the law. Macedonia is the only country that has declared a state of emergency in the border areas, where special activities and measures are in place,” elaborated President Ivanov.
Ivanov on Saturday visited the southern border crossing near Dojran and Gevgelija as well as the migrant reception center. ba/14:38
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