Bulgaria to boost surveillance to prevent migrants crossing Turkish border


 Reuters International

SOFIA (Reuters) - Bulgaria's interim government said on Wednesday it would step up surveillance at the border with Turkey to prevent an increase in the number of migrants crossing.

The surveillance system will including sensors and video cameras at the southeastern frontier, a government statement said, adding it was "a project of national importance".

In 2013, the Black Sea state began constructing a barbed wire fence along the border, which is expected to be completed in May, to keep migrants out.

"The goal is to cover the entire border with video surveillance," Interior Ministry spokeswoman Kerstin Boyadzhiyska said. "It's getting warmer and we have to be ready."

The number of people detained at the Turkish border has dropped significantly in recent months, with 480 migrants stopped in December, compared to 3,015 in August, Interior Ministry figures showed.

Bulgarian nationalists have staged protests calling for the immediate closure of all refugee centres and for migrants to be returned to Turkey or their country of origin.

Last year Bulgaria called in its army to assist police in guarding the European Union-member's borders.

(Reporting by Angel Krasimirov; Editing by Janet Lawrence)

Reuters

 Reuters International