News 04 Sep 17

Romania Seizes Third Migrant Boat in Black Sea

Romanian coastguards seized another boat containing migrants on Sunday, amid fears that the country is becoming a new migration route to the West. 

Ana Maria Touma
BIRN
Bucharest
Out of 87 people on the small boat seized by the Romanian Coast Guard, 23 were children. Photo: politiadefrontiera.ro

Romanian coastguards on Sunday intercepted a fishing vessel carrying 87 migrants, including 23 children, in the Black Sea.

The boat was sailing toward the Romanian coast in the third incident of its kind in the past month.

The number of people trying to cross the border from Romania to Hungary has also increased during the past month, officials say.

Romanian border police reported at least 90 people trying to cross illegally into Hungary during the last week of August.

Police in Timisoara, in western Romania, during a raid at the weekend found 28 migrants living in parks or on the streets.

With the border closed for migrants between Bulgaria and Turkey as well as between Hungary and Serbia and Croatia, officials in Bucharest are concerned that Romania might be becoming part of a new migration route.

However, Interior Minister Carmen Dan on Sunday for now ruled out taking a hard line on them. “Migrants will be treated as people who need help, not as criminals,” he said.

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