Czech Republic Extends Checks On Slovak Border Until 28 October

Checks at the Czech-Slovak border have been extended until 28 October. Photo credit: Kirk, via Wikimedia Commons, CC BY-SA 3.0.

Prague, Oct 5 (CTK) – The Czech Republic will extend the checks at its border with Slovakia by another 20 days from the original 8 October deadline, until 28 October. The cabinet approved this proposal from Interior Minister Vit Rakusan today.

Rakusan (STAN) said the measure has had a clear effect so far, as the inflow of refugees has been declining. Rakusan also mentioned that the border checks have helped to catch a number of people smugglers.

Apart from the Czech police, 80 soldiers will be deployed for the border checks from Sunday to reinforce the police and customs officers.

According to the latest data, the police have checked over 145,000 people since the beginning of the checks on 29 September, intercepting some 1,450 refugees and detaining 39 people smugglers. They have returned some 450 people to Slovakia. Over 500 people checked did not meet the requirements for entry to the Czech Republic.

Last week, the Czech police said they had detained almost 1,200 people at the border since the beginning of this year, most of them Syrian refugees. This is a far higher number than in 2015 during the peak of the migrant crisis in Europe. In recent years, Czech police have detained up to a few dozen people smugglers a year.

In reaction to the Czech decision to reimpose border checks, Austria also launched checks on its border with Slovakia last week.

Since Saturday, Slovakia has had police patrols at four selected border crossings with Hungary, and has reinforced the joint police patrols operating in the Hungarian areas bordering Slovakia.

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