Slovenia’s last border, where 150 migrants are sent back every month

CAPODISTRIA (Slovenia) – Just over 25 percent of migrants traveling the Balkan route in Slovenian territory are stopped and sent back to Croatia. This is stated by the data provided by the Koper Police Department which released statistics on tracing, international protection, stay in centers for foreigners and country of origin for the first eight months of this year. Reading the data we learn that 5,176 people were arrested. Of these, 3,438 applied for international protection while 517 migrants were placed in detention facilities. In 1,221 cases (152 each month) the people were returned to the Croatian police.

Nationality and details

From the point of view of nationalities, most of the traces concern people from Afghanistan (1.269) and Pakistan (878); 517 and 510 migrants arrived from India and Bangladesh respectively; immediately behind Turkey, with 406 people and finally Nepal with 340. 1,256 people are missing from the appeal (according to the Koper Police Department all of other nationalities). These are important numbers which, compared with those of 2021, mark a doubling of arrivals. Between 1 January and 31 August last year, 2,648 migrants were tracked down by the Koper police.

They pay a labor agency, the migrants vanish after a week

The route is golden

However, the Balkan route is also and above all a profit opportunity for human traffickers. Also in these first eight months, Slovenian agents worked on investigations that led to 55 people in jail. The last two passeurs who ended up behind bars are two Serbian citizens, respectively 31 and 37 years old, identified on the road between Rižana and Gračišče on the night of 31 August. The agents of Koper arrived on the spot thanks to a report from a resident in the Sirči area, a few hundred meters from the border with Croatia.

Accomplices not yet traced

But someone manages to get away with it. Together with the two Serbian citizens there was also a third person who, aboard his car, managed to disappear and make his tracks disappear. After having arrested them, the police searched the house in Isola d’Istria, the place where the two passeurs have lived since February of this year. During the operation, the officers seized electronic devices and other items “relevant to the criminal proceedings”. Investigators are convinced that in this case there is the presence of accomplices not yet traced. For the two passeur, the investigating judge ordered their custody in prison.


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