Dozens of Chechens stuck in Europe trying to escape mobilization
Several dozen Chechens are trying to get into the European Union through Bosnia and Herzegovina, escaping from mobilization for the war against Ukraine, and are facing problems.
In particular, on Thursday, December 29, a group of Chechens was allegedly detained at the Sarajevo airport to "verify the data and assess the validity of their intention to enter Bosnia and Herzegovina," Radio Liberty reports.
According to the representative of the border police of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Svevlad Hofman, we are talking about people who did not have return tickets.
"It has been established that these people are trying to abuse the visa-free regime between Russia and Bosnia and Herzegovina," he said.
The police do not announce how many people are involved. According to Kavkaz.Realii (Radio Liberty project), 20 people were detained, including children. Some of them connected their visit to the country with the flight from mobilization for the war against Ukraine. In the end, the border guards denied them entry, and on December 29, these persons were returned to Turkey, from which they came to Bosnia and Herzegovina. Some detainees told reporters they planned to seek political asylum in Croatia.
Earlier this week, the Ministry of Security of Bosnia and Herzegovina announced the presence in the country of about 50 Russian citizens, mostly from Chechnya.
"These people entered our country legally based on a visa-free regime and can stay up to 30 days. Most of these people … want to continue traveling to the EU because, according to their own statements, they want to avoid mobilization in the country," the message said.
Also, the Minister of Security of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Selmo Cikotić, informed that these people entered Bosnia and Herzegovina legally but could not enter Croatia.
"They want political asylum in Croatia. Croatia does not agree to this yet," said Cikotić.
At the same time, the Croatian Ministry of the Interior stated that Zagreb did not refuse entry to this group of persons. They also reported that a certain number of Chechens received permission to enter but did not name the number.
Russia has already responded to reports of its citizens stranded on the way between Bosnia and Herzegovina and Croatia, running away from mobilization. The Russian embassy called these reports "speculations," writes the Russian propaganda agency RIA Novosti.