PRAGUE: Poland and the Czech Republic said on Tuesday they were introducing checks on borders with Slovakia to curb illegal migration, but Bratislava called for a “European solution”.
“Starting midnight, we are reintroducing border controls at the border with Slovakia,” Poland´s Interior Minister Mariusz Kaminski told reporters. Working “in coordination with neighbours”, Prague will follow suit, said the Czech interior ministry.
In both countries, the checks are expected to last ten days at first. “The number of illegal migrants into the EU is beginning to grow again. We are not taking this lightly,” Czech Prime Minister Petr Fiala said on X, formerly Twitter.
Slovakia has recently seen an uptick in migrants coming largely from Serbia via Hungary. Following Warsaw´s and Prague´s moves, outgoing Slovak Prime Minister Ludovit Odor said “migration needs a European solution at the external borders.”
“Once a country boosts the protection of its own border, it creates a cascading effect, we will all pay money for it, and the result will be very unclear,” Odor said in a statement. He added Slovakia would respond to its neighbours´ move on Wednesday.
In the first eight months of this year, Slovakia detected approximately 24,500 migrants who had entered illegally. That was up from nearly 10,900 for all of last year and only hundreds per year before that, according to Slovak police.