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20 Apr 2017 description

Migrants find shelter in old rusting carriages on the outskirts of Greece's northern city of Thessaloniki.

THESSALONIKI, Greece, April 19 (Reuters) - It was Mohamed Khaleuf's third attempt to cross the Greek-Macedonian border hiding in a freight train and he had no plans to give up trying.

Read more on the Thomson Reuters Foundation

12 Jan 2017 description

The lowest temperatures in decades and a blanket of heavy snow in parts of the Balkans, Greece, and Eastern Europe are causing dozens of deaths, power outages, and travel delays.

Authorities have blamed at least 73 deaths on the extreme weather, the coldest since 1963, including at least 15 people who froze to death in the Balkans this week -- four elderly men in Bosnia-Herzegovina, six people in Serbia, two homeless men in Kosovo, and an elderly woman and two homeless men in Macedonia.

11 Aug 2016 description

"The crisis is as big as ever, and as yet unsolved by governments"

  • Migrant arrivals to Europe up 15 percent on last year

  • Europe's 'silent crisis' simmers behind veil of invisibility

  • EU deal with Turkey remains fragile

By Michele Kambas and Antonio Bronic

09 Aug 2016 description

By Deana Kjuka

In the wake of deadly flash floods in and around the Macedonian capital, criticism over how the disaster was handled and why more was not done to prevent it is flooding in.

Activists, citizens, and online media are expressing outrage at what they view as the government's slow response, failure to issue warnings as torrential rains battered Skopje and its environs on the night of August 5-6, and neglect of a storm-drain system that could have prevented the flooding that killed at least 21 people.

26 Feb 2016 description
report The New York Times


ROME — Roughly five weeks ago, Donald Tusk, one of the European Union’s most powerful political figures, issued a blunt warning to its 28 countries: Come up with a coherent plan to tackle the refugee crisis within two months, or risk chaos.

22 Feb 2016 description
report Al Jazeera

Macedonian officials say hundreds stuck in their country as Serbia "only accepting people coming from Syria and Iraq".

Patrick Strickland

Hundreds of Afghan refugees have been stuck in Macedonia since Serbian authorities started denying them entry three days ago, according to Macedonia's interior ministry.

Read the full report here.

14 Feb 2016 description

ZURICH, Feb 14 (Reuters) - Austria will start building new facilities to better protect its borders, notably the one with Italy, Chancellor Werner Faymann said in an interview published on Sunday, underlining efforts to limit admissions of migrants.

Austria recently built a 3.7 km (2.3 mile) fence at its busiest border crossing with Slovenia, Spielfeld, saying this would help manage the flow of new arrivals onto its territory.

Read the full article

11 Dec 2015 description


Macedonia has introduced strict border controls, saying it's trying to separate economic migrants from refugees fleeing war. The result is thousands of asylum seekers who are now stranded in Greece, a country that has allowed migrants to pass through, but does not want them to stay.

Read the full report here.

20 Nov 2015 description

Four Balkan nations shut their borders Thursday to migrants who are not coming from war-torn countries such as Syria, Afghanistan or Iraq.

BELGRADE, SERBIA — Four nations along Europe's Balkan refugee corridor shut their borders Thursday to those not coming from war-torn countries such as Syria, Afghanistan or Iraq, leaving thousands of others seeking a better life in Europe stranded at border crossings.

27 Oct 2015 description
report Deutsche Welle

Author Diego Cupolo, Presovo, Serbia

Across the Balkans, the number of refugees continues to rise and efforts to register new arrivals have created long queues in understaffed and underfunded areas such as Presevo, Serbia from where Diego Cupolo reports.

For Zmarai Muradi, an Afghan refugee from Kunduz, the hardest part of his month-long voyage to Europe was not the 15-day trek through Iranian deserts nor being sprayed by water cannons while crossing the sea to Lesvos.

19 Oct 2015 description

ABU DHABI, 17th October 2015 (WAM) - Europe is witnessing its most dramatic influx of refugees since the end of World War II. Vast numbers of refugees, mainly from Syria, but also from Iraq, Eritrea and Afghanistan are fleeing from civil war and conflict resulting in desperate attempts to cross the Mediterranean to Europe where they hope to find safety and shelter.

26 Aug 2015 description

For many thousands of migrants heading to Europe from the Middle East, the long route to a new life now lies through Greece and the Western Balkans with the ultimate destination in Germany and other northern EU countries.

It is a journey fraught with risk, braving the Aegean Sea, Balkan people smugglers and the long path over land through Europe.

BBC correspondents have traced that journey, describing what happens along the route.

Read the full article

06 Apr 2015 description
report The Guardian

Smugglers are taking more illegal migrants through the western Balkans, but the route holds great hardships for a group of west Africans heading for Macedonia

After a 10-day trek over 150km, Sandrine Koffi’s dream of a new life in Europe ended and her nightmare of losing her infant daughter in the Macedonian night began.

Read the full article

22 Jul 2014 description

Nine Balkan militaries agree to jointly assist the civilian population in times of disasters.

By Miki Trajkovski for Southeast European Times in Skopje -- 22/07/14

In the wake of damaging flooding in Bulgaria, Serbia, Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) this year, military leaders of nine countries in southeast Europe are promising to work together to co-ordinate emergency response to future natural disasters.

21 May 2014 description

Organisations in Croatia, Slovenia, Montenegro, Macedonia and Turkey are providing humanitarian aid to Serbia and Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) following catastrophic floods that killed dozens and have left thousands homeless. The countries have sent specially trained teams, equipment, water, food, medicine and volunteers to Serbian and BiH authorities.

30 Mar 2012 description

Peace agreements brought the last Balkan conflict to an end more than two decades ago, but they didn't resolve ethnic tensions, which are rising to the surface again.

Read the full article in the Christian Science Monitor.

29 Apr 2010 description
report Transitions Online

After 10 years, many Romani refugees from the Kosovo conflict can neither return to their old homes nor build new ones abroad.

by Michael J. Jordan and Shejla Fidani

SHUTO ORIZARI, Macedonia, and POMAZATIN, Kosovo | The anguish is etched on Nedzmije Selimi's face even before she starts talking.

In a gray-and-white headscarf and threadbare vest, she lets loose with her lament. First, she lost her husband to a brain aneurysm, which left her to raise their son alone in Kosovo, a society on the brink of war.

21 Oct 2009 description
report Xinhua

BELGRADE, Oct 21, 2009 (Xinhua via COMTEX) -- Serbia and Russia agreed here on Wednesday to establish a joint humanitarian center in the southern Serbian city of Nis for immediate response to emergencies such as fire, floods and earthquakes.

Serbian First Deputy Prime Minister and Interior Minister Ivica Dacic and Russian Minister for Emergency Situations Sergei Shoigu signed a plan on the center's initial stage of development.

Later, the two leaders told a joint press conference that the center should serve the entire region and offer quick and efficient support in case of …

19 Oct 2009 description

SKOPJE, Macedonia/PRISTINA, Kosovo -- Macedonia and Kosovo have established diplomatic relations, the foreign ministries of the two countries announced on Sunday (October 18th).

17 Oct 2009 description

PRISTINA, Oct 17 (Reuters) - The Kosovo and Macedonian parliaments on Saturday ratified an agreement ending an eight-year dispute between the two countries over a border region used by gunmen and smugglers.

The deal, signed late on Friday, was the culmination of months of negotiations under the auspices of the European Union and the United States, which has more than 1,000 soldiers patrolling the zone on the Kosovo side.

"The leadership of both countries has shown significant resolve and taken a major step forward to ensure regional stability", the U.S.