The village of Trestenik in the district of Korca is one of the border villages seen as the first station for illegal migrants arriving from the Middle East.
The inhabitants of Trestenik offer food and clothing to migrants, who - very often - are accompanied by underage children. Taking advantage of the dense green area of the area, migrants enter Greece and in Albania to then try to reach the countries of Western Europe.
Dozens of Syrian and Iraqi migrants are arrested practically every day by the Albanian border police and the Frontex, the European agency that monitors external borders. Despite this, other dozens manage to cross the border, stopping in Albanian villages in search of food and clothes and then set off again in search of a better future.
Albania-Greece border, Frontex: the number of migrants is growing
In an interview a Deutsche Welle, spokeswoman Frontex Izabella Cooper, said that the number of illegal migrants crossing the Gracia-Albania border has doubled compared to last year.
"We have seen significant growth. To give you concrete numbers: in June of this year, 500 were the illegal immigrants who entered Albania through Greece. In September the number rose to 1300. The number of migrants has doubled compared to last year. Growth is continuous and significant. "- declares Izabella Cooper for DW.
Currently along the border between Greece and Albania about 50 Frontex units from 12 countries of the European Union and divided into five border points, in particular between Kakavijë (Gjirokastër) and Kapshticë (Korçë).
"This joint patrol has very important purposes. One of these is certainly the management of migratory waves, but Frontex units also assist the Albanian authorities in facing other dangers such as terrorism, trafficking in human beings or drugs and counterfeit documents.
I would like to stress that the role of Frontex is not to replace but to provide additional technical support to the Albanian authorities. So in all our activities the Albanian border police is always present in the field.”- adds the Frontex spokesperson.
Albania, a route for emigrants
Albania has recently returned to being - after the strengthening of Serbia's borders - a transit country for immigrants traveling from Greece and Bulgaria to Western European countries.
For this reason, in fact, since last summer about 45 agents of Frontex - the European agency of the border and coastal guard - had arrived in our country and they had spread out in different places along the border sections.
A trend that FRONTEX wants to extend throughout the Western Balkans: according to the German Ministry of the Interior, in fact, agreements with Serbia, Northern Macedonia and Bosnia and Herzegovina would be "in the final phase of the negotiations".
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