BELGRADE, Serbia — Serbian special police on Wednesday raided a makeshift camp near the border with Hungary where they found 200 migrants, detained people smugglers and confiscated weapons and money.
The police operation in Srpski Krstur, by the Tisa river that runs along the border with Hungary, comes just two days after Serbia, Hungary and Austria agreed to take joint action to curb an increased influx of migrants into their countries and further into Europe.
Police said in a statement that some of those found in the camp were transferred to state-run facilities, while some have been taken before the prosecutors to face legal proceedings for the smuggling of people, weapons and drugs, and for committing violent acts.
It was not immediately clear how many people will face legal charges. Police also said they found three handguns, an automatic rifle, knives, machetes and money, while photos from the scene showed special police searching the tent camp and escorting a column of migrants.
“Serbia has not been and never will be an area where criminals and scum come and stay, who traffic in people and make money on their hardship and sorrow,” said Interior Minister Aleksandar Vulin.
At a meeting in Hungary earlier this week, Serbia, Hungary and Austria said they will draft a joint action plan on how to counter an apparent increase in arrivals of people fleeing wars or poverty in the Middle East, Africa or Asia.
Hundreds, if not thousands, of people are believed to be camping in Serbia by the Hungarian border, seeking help from people smugglers to cross and move on toward Western Europe. Hungary has put up a double wire fence along the border to stop the migrants from coming in.
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