A young Iraqi migrant sneaked under a bus in Serbia and travelled for five hours clinging to its axle before he was discovered in Croatia, media reported Thursday.
The Jutarnji List daily quoted officials of the Croatian bus company Cazmatrans as saying that the 21-year-old migrant got under the bus travelling from Belgrade to Zagreb on Tuesday.
It said he risked his life for five hours holding on to the axle for some 400 kilometers with his arms and legs.
“We heard a loud noise under the bus… We called one of the bus drivers and when he heard the unusual sounds he stopped the bus,” one of the passengers was quoted by the paper as saying.
As soon as the bus stopped near Ivanic Grad, 40 kilometers southeast of Zagreb, the visibly shocked young man crawled out, dirty and with blood on his hands, the passenger said.
Croatian police in a statement said they found the 21-year-old man at a roadside rest area after being called by the bus driver.
They said the migrant received medical attention but was not seriously injured.
Meanwhile, the interior ministry said in a statement that the man was currently in a transit center for migrants, and due to his “illegal entry in Croatia” proceedings to return him to Serbia were under way.
Croatia, a European Union member, lies on a route that was used by hundreds of thousands of migrants travelling through the Balkans to western and northern Europe until authorities moved to stop them in 2016.
Several thousand migrants got stuck in Serbia, but every day dozens still try to continue on their journey.