Budapest, March 28 (MTI) – Hungary’s army chief and the deputy leader of national police visited the Hungarian-Serbian border region on Monday.
The 174 kilometre border is completely sealed to prevent illegal entry attempts by migrants, Zsolt Halmosi, the deputy police chief, said near the village of Ásotthalom.
There are more than 1,000 police officers and soldiers patrolling the region, he said, adding that cooperation is excellent with the Serbian partner authorities under which patrols are being carried out by joint teams.
In the first three months of the year, 5,589 illegal entrants have been detained along the section compared with 29,500 during the same period last year, he said.
Hungarian authorities have launched legal proceedings against 62 human smugglers since January and against more than 1,000 in 2015 as a whole, he said.
Halmosi said that national police continue to monitor alternative smuggling routes and stand ready to prevent mass illegal entry attempts at the Hungarian-Romanian border.
Army chief Tibor Benkő said Hungarian troops dispatched since last July to patrol the southern border region to support police’s work are motivated and well prepared for their duties.
Many of them returned from missions elsewhere and several others are preparing to go on missions in Kosovo or Iraq, Benkő said.
According to statistical data compiled by prosecution and courts, the background of illegal entrants is rather diverse: many come from Afghanistan, Iran and Pakistan, or countries in north Africa, but migrants also come from places like Haiti or Sri Lanka.