300 illegal migrants found in Serbian forest close to Hungarian border, 13 firearms and ammunition seized by police

By Thomas Brooke
2 Min Read

Around 300 illegal migrants in possession of a large weapons stash have been found by Serbian authorities located in a forest belt near the country’s northern border with Hungary.

A sizeable police operation involving 820 officers participated in an operation to locate and apprehend the group, which authorities suspectedincluded a number of people smugglers trafficking illegal migrants into the European Union.

Members of the Special Anti-Terrorist Unit, the Gendarmerie, the Police Intervention Unit, the Police Brigade, the Border Police Administration, the Criminal Police Administration, the Technical Administration, the Anti-Terrorist Group, and the Subotica Police Administration, all took part in the operation, according to Serbian newspaper, The Telegraf.

A total of 13 individuals were detained and a further 27 had misdemeanor charges filed against them.

During the search, police recovered nine automatic rifles, a hunting carbine with scope, and three pistols, in addition to 841 rounds of ammunition.

The remaining migrant group has been transported to reception centers across the country for processing.

“We are determined to oppose irregular migration and not allow smuggling groups to threaten the safety of our citizens,” said Interior Minister Bratislav Gasic.

“Today’s operation by the police is just another in a series that shows the firmness of that determination. The safety of our citizens comes first for us,” he added.

The minister added that while the country will continue to comply with international conventions and respect migrants, the government demands that, in turn, new arrivals respect Serbian laws and customs and do not abuse them.

The vast majority of migrants use Serbia as a transit nation, passing through the Balkan country on their way to the European Union. Around 90,000 migrants traveled through the country last year.

As a result, Hungary has ramped up its border security with Serbia in recent years, constructing a formidable border wall and deploying thousands of border officials to man the border and preserve Hungary’s national security.

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