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Refugee influx leads to proposal to fence up Bulgaria-Turkey border

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Refugee influx leads to proposal to fence up Bulgaria-Turkey border


Bulgaria has unveiled plans to deal with the growing numbers of refugees that are approaching its borders from Turkey.

Ministers are said to have discussed new funding allocations to put up 30 kilometres of barrier fencing along the border with Elhovo, in an effort to prevent illegal entry via the border.

If approved, the fences will be built in the areas that are most susceptible to migrants, currently mostly Syrian, crossing into Bulgaria.

The Bulgarian deputy Interior Minister justified the proposal, saying that the fences would be put up in places where there are pre-existing transport systems on the Turkish side, so that cars and buses can reach the border.

“There is no visibility in the area and the Bulgarian border police can’t see the people crossing the border till the last minute,” he added.

Bulgarian ministers have said their aim is not to send refugees back to their home countries, but to better protect the border.

A recent report by national broadcaster BNT claims that dissatisfaction is growing among district mayors, who don’t want to accept refugees in their areas.

“Bulgaria aims to find a solution for Syrian refugees, which is a burdensome issue for the country, and prevent needless tension and worry among the citizens in the country,” said foreign minister Kristian Vigenin.

In September, the number of Syrian refugees in Bulgaria was put at 4,500. At the same time, the Bulgarian Interior Ministry made a statement saying that Bulgaria could not afford to fence up their border with Turkey.

The cabinet is due to continue to brainstorm the refugee issue on October 21.

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