Bulgaria to Set up Checkpoints on Minor Roads to Thwart Migrant Smuggling
Bulgaria’s Ministry of the Interior will set up checkpoints inside the country to counter the smuggling of irregular migrants, a senior police official has said.
New checkpoints will be built on minor roads as well as forest roads used by people smugglers to transport migrants who have illegally crossed into Bulgaria, the head of National Police, Chief Commissioner Hristo Terziyski, told public radio broadcaster BNR on Monday.
The idea is to thwart attempts of smugglers to transport irregular migrants from Bulgaria’s border with Turkey to the border with Serbia. The land route across Bulgaria has been increasingly used by people smugglers after Greece, Macedonia and Serbia closed the so-called Western Balkan route for migrants and refugees trying to reach western Europe earlier this year.
Additional checkpoints will be set up initially in Burgas Region bordering Turkey, Terziyski said.
Migration pressure in Burgas Region has increased in summer months with police thwarting people smuggling attempts on roads inside the region almost daily.
In most cases people smugglers currently use passenger cars, vans and SUVs to transport migrants, Terziyski said. Several years ago they used buses and bigger vans, he added.
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