Macedonian police fire tear gas on migrants

Macedonian police fire tear gas on migrants
# 21 August 2015 18:20 (UTC +04:00)

Baku-APA. Macedonian police units used tear gas Friday to prevent hundreds of migrants to enter the country through the southern border from Greece, APA reports quoting Anadolu Agency.

Police acted after the Macedonian government declared a state of emergency Thursday due to the increased influx of migrants and refugees, many of them from the Middle East, at its borders with Greece and Serbia.

Some hundreds of people spent the night on Macedonia's southern border and tried to enter in the morning. The Macedonian police fired tear gas to disperse them.

The migrants have taken to protesting on the railroad tracks, obstructing railway traffic between Macedonia and Greece.

Meanwhile, the Macedonian army deployed troops in the two border regions near Greece and Serbia to stand guard and build fences.

According to Macedonian state news agency MIA, the flow of migrants has reduced on both the northern and southern borders of the country following the deployment of army units and police units.

According to the Interior Ministry on Thursday, 1,327 foreigners sought to apply for asylum in 24 hours, which allows them to reside in Macedonia for three days. Most of them use that time to travel to the Serbian border. The overwhelming majority of these refugees were Syrians -- 1,004.

In the past two months, the number stood at 41,414 foreigners, of which 33,461 were Syrians, followed by Afghans, Iraqis, and Pakistanis.