Bosnian authorities charge 16 people after severing human trafficking network | World news


SARAJEVO (Reuters) – Bosnian prosecutors indicted 16 people for smuggling more than 850 illegal migrants to EU countries last year, the public prosecutor’s office said on Friday.

Bosnia and Herzegovina‘s prosecutor’s office, in a statement, said Bosnian police services, cooperating with foreign agencies, had dismantled an organized criminal network made up of Bosnians and foreigners who smuggled illegal migrants from Bosnia to Croatia and other countries of the European Union between September and December 2020.

Since 2017, Bosnia has become a transit route for migrants from Asia and North Africa en route to the wealthier countries of the West. But many remained stuck in the Balkan country as EU countries tightened their borders.

According to the International Organization for Migration, around 6,000 migrants are currently stationed in Bosnia, most of them from Pakistan, Afghanistan and Iraq. Most of them are in reception camps but many are also accommodated in abandoned houses and logging camps in western Bosnia, near the Croatian border.

(Reporting by Daria Sito-Sucic; Editing by Susan Fenton)

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