The Czech Republic should defend its borders, using the army to expel “illegal immigrants” because the European Union isn’t curbing the influx of refugees into the bloc, President Milos Zeman said.

Zeman’s comments echoed those of other politicians calling for the EU to take action to stem the flood of people into the region from Syria and other conflict areas as they travel through Greece and the Balkan states to western Europe.

“Of course I would wish for the EU to strengthen its borders, but I don’t see any real action,” Zeman told reporters in Prague castle on Monday. “Therefore I believe the Czech Republic should take of its borders alone and expel illegal immigrants from the borders, including with the use of the army.”

The refugee crisis has escalated in central Europe this month, with Austrian police finding a Hungarian-licensed truck containing the bodies of 71 migrants last week. Scores more drowned when their boats capsized off the coast of Libya. Most refugees traveling to the EU pass through former communist countries as they head to Germany and other richer states.

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