September 30, 2023


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Hundreds of migrants freezing in heavy snow in Bosnia camp

BIHAC, Bosnia-Herzegovina — Hundreds of migrants were stranded Saturday in a squalid, burnt-out tent camp in Bosnia as heavy snow fell in the country and winter season temperatures out of the blue dropped.

Migrants at the Lipa camp in northwest Bosnia wrapped them selves in blankets and sleeping bags to defend against the biting winds in the region, which borders European Union member Croatia.

A fire earlier this week ruined considerably of the camp close to the city of Bihac that by now was harshly criticized by international officials and assist teams as remaining insufficient for housing refugees and migrants.

Despite the fire, Bosnian authorities have failed to discover new accommodations for the migrants at Lipa, leaving around 1,000 individuals caught in the cold, with no services or warmth, feeding on only meager food stuff parcels furnished by assist groups.

Migrants heat their toes by a hearth at the Lipa camp northwestern Bosnia, in close proximity to the border with Croatia, on Saturday.
Kemal Softic / AP

“Snow has fallen, sub-zero temperatures, no heating, very little,” the Global Corporation for Migration’s chief of mission in Bosnia, Peter Van Der Auweraert, tweeted. “This is not how any person should really live. We will need political bravery and motion now.”

Bosnia has grow to be a bottleneck for countless numbers of migrants hoping to reach Western Europe. Most are stuck in Bosnia’s northwest Krajina area as other areas in the ethnically divided country have refused to accept them. The EU has warned Bosnia that hundreds of migrants experience a freezing wintertime with out shelter, and it has urged the country’s bickering politicians to established aside their variances and take motion.

On Saturday, migrants crowded at the camp to receive h2o and food items supplied by Bosnia’s Purple Cross as law enforcement sought to maintain buy. Some migrants wore face shields to safeguard them from coronavirus.

“We are residing like animals. Even animals are living far better than us!” claimed a gentleman from Pakistan who determined himself only by his very first name, Kasim. “If they not aid us, we will die, so be sure to help us.”

Programs to relocate the migrants briefly to a closed facility in central Bihac have prompted protests by citizens.

Remaining devoid of a answer, migrants set down carboard on the flooring and set up improvised limitations for privateness within the only standing tent at the Lipa camp. Some persons held their soaked toes over the compact fires that migrants lit exterior to heat up, though other folks wrapped up limited in blankets for heat. Quite a few migrants had been sporting sneakers despite the snow.

To get to Croatia, migrants often use unlawful routes around a mountainous area alongside the border. Numerous have complained of violence and pushbacks by the Croatian law enforcement.