Macedonia Considers Building Border Fence and Deploying Troops to Restrict Refugees

The Macedonian government is discussing following the example of Hungary by building a border fence in order to reduce the numbers of refugees entering the country, the Macedonian foreign minister has said.

In an interview with Hungarian business newspaper Figyelo, Foreign Minister Nikola Poposki said that "some kind of physical defence" would be needed to deal with the refugees, Reuters reported.

He hinted that Macedonia could also deploy troops to the border, a step Hungary is also mulling after launching military exercises on Wednesday. "Either soldiers of a fence or a combination of the two," said Poposki, when discussing what kind of physical defense would be required.

Between 3,000 and 4,000 refugees are arriving in Macedonia each day, according to Al Jazeera. Reuters reported that a single-day record of 7,000 refugees crossed into Macedonia on Monday. Macedonian police have used tear gas and stun grenades to stop refugees entering from its border with Greece. The government declared a state of emergency in August.

Greece has been transporting refugees from the island of Lesbos to its main port of Piraeus, from where most head north towards the Macedonian border.

Hungary is completing a 3.5 meter-high (11.5 ft), razor-wire fence along its 175 km border with Serbia in a bid to stem the flow of refugees into the country. More than 160,000 refugees and migrants have entered Hungary after traveling through Greece, Macedonia and Serbia, according to Reuters.