BELGRADE – FYROM (Macedonia) police have deployed tear gas and stun grenades against several hundred migrants attempting to cross the Greek-Macedonian border, Greek media said on Sunday.
Up to 200 migrants from the Idomeni refugee camp in Greece attempted to cross the border after gathering on a railway line, the New Post news website reported.
A brochure, written in Arabic and containing calls for gathering at Idomeni and attempting to cross the border, had been circulated prior to the incident, the website said.
Citing police sources, the media outlet noted that the attempt at crossing into Macedonia was minor and was not an organized act.
Since the beginning of 2016, over 147,000 migrants have arrived in Greece out of a total of some 160,000 arrivals to Europe via the Mediterranean, according to the International Organization for Migration.
Macedonia closed its border with Greece to incoming migrants in February after other countries along the Balkan route had closed their borders, including Serbia, Hungary, Croatia, Slovenia and Austria. The border closures have resulted in thousands of refugees being stranded in Greece, particularly along the border with Macedonia.