Around 7,600 refugees are currently “marooned” in Serbia, writes the British daily Guardian.
Tanjug on Tuesday cited an article published on the newspaper’s website – originally under this headline: “Blocked in the Balkans: the refugees that Europe won’t allow in” – to report that “many of them dreamed about life in other European countries” but are now “getting used to living in this area – while many are saying that many countries can learn from Serbia.”
Among them are members of the Faqirzada family, made up of “two parents and three teenage children” – who, the Guardian said, “set out for a future in Europe” – but “did not imagine it like this.”
Tanjug quotes the article as saying that “as far as they were concerned, Europe meant Germany – but they were forced to change their plans.”
The Belgrade-based agency also said in its article that the family “followed the same Balkan route that led about one million people to the EU between 2015 and 2016 – but when the Faqirzadas reached the (Serbian) border with Hungary, it was already closed.”
The family has been living here for the past eight months, and is “slowly realizing they might remain here for much longer.”
“Many countries could learn a lot from Serbia. In Afghanistan, no one cares for each other. In Turkey there were no schools. In Bulgaria we slept in forests. But in Serbia, the people support each other. They support my family too, I do not forget this,” Tanjug said, quoting Muhammad Farizada’s statement to the Guardian, who also said:
“We did not plan on staying. (We will wait here to reach the European Union until we die,) but if we are here for much longer we must learn Serbian.”
The man’s three children are enrolled in a primary school in Belgrade launched in March for 25 refugee children “as part of a pilot scheme,” the British daily said.