After a shootout in a town in which one person was shot, Serbian police discovered 600 illegal immigrants close to the Hungarian border on Friday, according to the Interior Ministry.
Police reported that the incident took place in the early hours in Horgos, in northern Serbia.
According to a police statement, “after hearing that migrants were on the street shooting at each other, members of the ministry of interior…started a detailed search.”
A police operation eventually uncovered around 600 migrants in the area, including weapons and some of those involved in the shootout, the ministry said in a separate statement citing Interior Minister Bratislav Gasic.
The Western Balkans route via Turkey, Bulgaria, North Macedonia and Serbia remains the main migratory path into the European Union, border agency Frontex said in September.
Many migrants are crossing borders using elaborate networks of smugglers who are sometimes armed.
Last week, Serbia agreed with Hungary and Austria to deploy more joint border patrols and align its visa policies with those of the EU to stem the flow of illegal migrants to the west through the Western Balkans.