Reuters International

Migrants make their way on foot on the outskirts of Brezice, Slovenia October 20, 2015. REUTERS/Srdjan Zivulovic

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LJUBLJANA (Reuters) - Slovenia is due to receive the first 30 refugees and migrants from Greece under the European Union migrant relocation scheme, the Interior Ministry said on Wednesday.

EU leaders in September approved the transfer of about 160,000 asylum seekers from Greece and Italy, where most of them arrived, to other EU states. So far less than 2,000 have been relocated.

The group of Syrians and Iraqis will arrive on Thursday and initially be placed in a centre for asylum seekers in the capital Ljubljana, the ministry said.

Slovenia has committed itself last year to take and integrate altogether 587 migrants, or up to 50 per month till August 2017.

The chaotic arrival of more than a million migrants and refugees last year that has strained EU cohesion

From October until some Balkan countries closed their borders to migrants in March, nearly 500,000 migrants passed through Slovenia on their way to countries with more open refugee policies such as Germany and Sweden. Only a fraction requested an asylum in Slovenia.

(Reporting By Marja Novak)

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