Czech Republic set to use army guarding borders from refugees
The Czech army is ready, if necessary, to put 900 servicemen to guard the border against refugees within 48 hours, Chief of Staff Josef Becvar said Saturday.
On Friday, Czech Interior Minister Milan Chovanec said the country would hold joint exercises of the police and the army to practice cooperation in the protection of the state borders in the event of a sharp increase in the inflow of undocumented migrants.
"The Czech army is ready, in case of problems with the flow of refugees, to help the police and to deploy 900 soldiers to protect the state border within 48 hours," Becrav told reporters.
According to Becvar, the maximum number of servicemen that the army could make available to the police at the border is 2,500 people.
At present, the Czech army has about 21,500 personnel.
Over 6,200 undocumented migrants have arrived in the Czech Republic in the first nine months of 2015, which is twice as much as in the same period last year, according to the Czech Statistical Office.
The majority of refugees who arrive in the country fleeing their war-torn home countries regard the Czech Republic as a transit country on their way to wealthier EU member states with high level of social benefits.