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Slovenia vows to tighten border with Croatia

Slovenia's prime minister says Slovenia will erect new obstacles along its frontier with Croatia. The measures are meant to control flow of refugees while maintaining an open border.

Prime Minister Miro Cerar said Tuesday Slovenia would put up "temporary technical hurdles" on its border with Croatia to control migrant flows, but would keep border crossings open.

His announcement comes a day after the Slovenian government said urgent measures were needed to control its border with fellow EU member Croatia.

"The government has prepared additional urgent measures to manage the migrants' flow, including the necessary measures to safeguard the Schengen border," the administration said in a statement issued Monday.

More than 170,000 refugees

fleeing war, poverty and strife

in the Middle East, Asia and Africa have crossed Slovenia since mid-October when Hungary sealed its border with Croatia. That decision

diverted the flow

towards Slovenia.

Authorities say around 30,000 more are expected to arrive in Slovenia over the next few days.

"In the coming days we will start putting up temporary technical hurdles on the border to direct the flow of migrants," Cerar told a news conference. "We are not closing the border. We want to ensure a controlled and secure flow of migrants and prevent a humanitarian catastrophe."

Rumors of another fence

Miro Cerar

Slovenian Prime Minister Miro Cerar has said he wants to control the refugee flow, but not close its borders as was the case in Hungary.

Slovenia, population 2 million, has been struggling to cope with the influx of tens of thousands of migrants since it found itself on the main Balkan route for people traveling from Turkey to more prosperous western and northern Europe.

Earlier private POP TV quoted unofficial sources that the government had acquired enough barbed wire to start fencing the most vulnerable parts of its 670-kilometer (416-mile) border, where most of the 167,000 migrants that entered Slovenia over the last month had crossed.

jar/kms (AFP, Reuters)

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