*

upload_article_image

Bosnian police clear migrants from camp near old minefield

Bosnian police rounded up migrants at a tent camp Tuesday and ordered them to board buses that would take them to what was described as a better facility near the capital of Sarajevo.

The Vucjak camp where the migrants were living has almost no facilities. Local authorities set it up last summer on a former landfill close to a minefield left over from Bosnia’s 1992-95 war.

The camp near the city of Bihac was deemed unsuitable for human habitation and Bosnia has been roundly criticized for housing migrants there.

Migrants wait to board a bus near the Vucjak makeshift camp outside Bihac, northwestern Bosnia, Tuesday, Dec. 10, 2019. Bosnian authorities have started relocation of hundreds of migrants from the Vucjak camp to other locations in Bosnia. (AP PhotoKemal Softic)

While migrants protested the conditions in the Vucjak camp, including staging a 3-day hunger strike last week, they opposed being moved away from Bosnia's border with Croatia.

Migrants have amassed near the northwestern section of the country’s border with Croatia for the past three years, hoping to cross illegally from Bosnia into the neighboring European Union country and travel on to western Europe.

The new camp is located some 300 kilometers (185 miles) away from Bihac.

A Bosnian police officer directs a bus carrying migrants near the Vucjak makeshift camp outside Bihac, northwestern Bosnia, Tuesday, Dec. 10, 2019. Bosnian authorities have started relocation of hundreds of migrants from the Vucjak camp to other locations in Bosnia. (AP PhotoKemal Softic)

Police had cautioned migrants against engaging in violence to stop their move, warning officers were prepared to use force.

The camp was expected to be fully cleared by the end of Tuesday.

Migrants wait to board a bus near the Vucjak makeshift camp outside Bihac, northwestern Bosnia, Tuesday, Dec. 10, 2019. Bosnian authorities have started relocation of hundreds of migrants from the Vucjak camp to other locations in Bosnia. (AP PhotoKemal Softic)

Bosnian special police gather in a village near the Vucjak makeshift camp outside Bihac, northwestern Bosnia, Tuesday, Dec. 10, 2019. Bosnian authorities have started relocation of hundreds of migrants from the Vucjak camp to other locations in Bosnia. (AP PhotoKemal Softic)

Migrants wait to board a bus near the Vucjak makeshift camp outside Bihac, northwestern Bosnia, Tuesday, Dec. 10, 2019. Bosnian authorities have started relocation of hundreds of migrants from the Vucjak camp to other locations in Bosnia. (AP PhotoKemal Softic)

A police bus carrying migrants moves through a village near the Vucjak makeshift camp outside Bihac, northwestern Bosnia, Tuesday, Dec. 10, 2019. Bosnian authorities have started relocation of hundreds of migrants from the Vucjak camp to other locations in Bosnia. (AP PhotoKemal Softic)

A Bosnian police officer looks at convoy of buses carrying migrants near the Vucjak makeshift camp outside Bihac, northwestern Bosnia, Tuesday, Dec. 10, 2019. Bosnian authorities have started relocation of hundreds of migrants from the Vucjak camp to other locations in Bosnia. (AP PhotoKemal Softic)

A bus carrying migrants drives past Bosnian police near the Vucjak makeshift camp outside Bihac, northwestern Bosnia, Tuesday, Dec. 10, 2019. Bosnian authorities have started relocation of hundreds of migrants from the Vucjak camp to other locations in Bosnia. (AP PhotoKemal Softic)

A convoy of police vehicles carrying migrants moves through a village near the Vucjak makeshift camp outside Bihac, northwestern Bosnia, Tuesday, Dec. 10, 2019. Bosnian authorities have started relocation of hundreds of migrants from the Vucjak camp to other locations in Bosnia. (AP PhotoKemal Softic)