In 2015, Europe faced to the largest refugee issue. After German PM Merkel’s commitment “The incumbent government will take Syrian and Iraqi refugees”, the number of refugees crossing the Aegean Sea dramatically increased.
The refugees arrived at Greece by boat trying to come into Germany, the gateway of Western Europe, through the Balkan Peninsula. This route is quite demanding. The route starts from Greece, and need to go through Macedonia, Serbia, Croatia, Hungary, and Austria. However, these countries refuse refugees due to their own economic situation. Hungary even closed border. Serbia closed border to Croatia as well, but temporarily opened because of container traffic.
The refugees had to choose this journey for life, not death by their own counties’ political situation. But this journey itself is severe and extremely long to endure One Syrian I met in Bapska, Croatia crossed a mountain on foot for 3 days, and took a boat to Greece. As soon as he arrived at Greece, he walked to Croatia without rest. He was just hanging in there without food. There are thousands people near checkpoint in Opatovac, Croatia waiting for coming into checkpoint zone, so that the zone is becoming out of control. People are suffering cold and mounting fatigue on the road without tents, but the opportunity to see a doctor is given only to the people inside checkpoint zone. The Croatian government is sending the unaffordable refugees near Hungarian border, and police try to prevent media exposure.
They’ve chosen this journey as the last option even though they had to face enormous danger. Children are exposed to tremendous insecurity, and the parents are getting extremely sensitive in the current situation.
They ask me, “Where is our next destination?”