The last train bringing migrants to Hungary pulled up on the Croatian side of the frontier just hours before new regulations came into effect.
At midnight (October 16-17), Hungary sealed off the border with Croatia, leaving just two transit zones open for asylum applications.
Up to 8,000 people who make the crossing daily may now be forced to alter their route.
Hungary’s move to close its southern border with Croatia forms part of a unilateral crackdown on the flow of migrants to Europe. It closed off the frontier with Serbia in September, 2015.
Many migrants attempting to reach Germany or Austria, face being diverted to Slovenia which, like Hungary, is a member of the Schengen Zone, allowing passport-free travel.
“We are redirecting the corridor towards Slovenia,” said Ranko Ostojic, Croatia’s Interior Minister. “It means, of course, that we must respect all the rules, as there isn’t an agreement with the Slovenian side on a ‘Plan C,’ which is a Croatian plan. It is important that Slovenia accepts people who wish to migrate to Croatia, as long as Austria and Germany continue to receive migrants.”
Official crossing points remain open to those wishing to apply for refugee status in Hungary.
Wire fences have been already been erected between Hungary, Serbia and Croatia.
Those attempting to breach the fences are put on trial and more often than not expelled from the country.