Bratislava (Slovakia), Aug 3 (IANS) A referendum on setting up a temporary refugee camp was held in Slovakia’s Gabcikovo city.
“People want to live in peace and security. The referendum was announced following a petition that was signed by 3,148 people,” Xinhua news agency quoted Mayor Ivan Fenes as saying on Sunday.
The Slovak government has made an agreement with Austria on placing 500 refugees seeking asylum in Austria on a temporary basis at the Gabcikovo facility, which in the past also served as a refugee camp.
Slovakia will provide food and shelter to the migrants while their asylum procedures are being dealt with in Austria.
Many people in Gabcikovo appeared to be afraid that their security may be endangered by the presence of the asylum seekers.
“Problems emerged when there were more than 800 refugees; we also registered pretty serious problems then. Even 100 refugees would be too many for a village with 5,000 inhabitants,” said Fenes, adding that the locals were happy when the facility was shut down for refugees six years ago.
Nevertheless, the Slovak interior ministry cited Slovak constitution, saying that results of the local referendum won’t by binding for the state.