Watch Police Disperse Migrants With Tear Gas in Europe’s Latest No Man’s Land

Thousands of migrants are hoping to pass through Macedonia en route to northern Europe.


In the last two months, 44,000 migrants and refugees have reportedly traveled through Macedonia from Greece’s border as they head to northern European nations in search of work and asylum. The Greek-Macedonian border is one flash point in Europe’s ongoing migrant crisis, and the Macedonian government is trying to stem the flow of people by imposing a state of emergency in some border regions and deploying the army there.

On Friday, any semblance of order on the border broke down as troopers in riot gear fired tear gas and, reportedly, stun grenades to disperse crowds of migrants hoping to cross into Macedonia. Video footage shows the awful situation that has developed on the border, where large numbers of migrants, many from the Middle East, are simply hoping to pass through on their way north.

According to the BBC, the Macedonian Interior Ministry said that it will allow a “limited number of illegal migrants in vulnerable categories to enter Macedonia, and they may be provided aid in accordance with the state’s capacities.” But it remains unclear to what extent migrants will be allowed to pass through the Balkan nation. The BBC reports that 181 migrants have been issued transit documents in the last 24 hours.

Throughout Europe, these scenes keep playing out, as EU nations remain deadlocked on how to best distribute the millions of migrants streaming into the continent. In the absence of such a policy, no man’s lands are developing along various borders, including the Greek-Macedonian frontier, the border separating France and Italy, and at Calais at the southern mouth of the Chunnel between France and England.

Photo credit: EPA

Elias Groll is a staff writer at Foreign Policy. Twitter: @EliasGroll

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