Migrants Arrive Croatia, As Hungary Closes Border | Independent Newspapers Limited
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Migrants Arrive Croatia, As Hungary Closes Border

Posted: Sep 16, 2015 at 1:43 pm   /   by   /   comments (0)


The first group of migrants has reached Croatia, opening up a new route to northern European Union (EU) countries, a day after Hungary sealed its border with Serbia.

About 150 migrants crossed into Croatia, an EU member, from Serbia.

Croatia says it is ready to receive them or “direct” them to where they want to go. Many migrants – mainly Syrian – are hoping to reach Germany.

New border restrictions and a row over allocating migrants have shown bitter divisions in Europe over the crisis.

On Tuesday, Hungary declared a state of emergency in the border area, with hundreds of army and police deployed to enforce new laws making it an offence to breach a razor-wire border fence.

Police sealed a railway crossing point near Roszke which had been used by tens of thousands of migrants to enter the European border-free Schengen zone.

The move, according to BBC, has all but stopped the inflow. On Wednesday, Hungarian police said that they had detained 367 migrants entering illegally – and the first criminal proceedings had been launched.

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Christian Fraser on the Hungarian side of the border fence notices some weak points.

The EU’s border agency says more than 500,000 migrants have arrived at the EU’s borders so far this year, compared with 280,000 in 2014.

Many are fleeing conflict and poverty in countries including Syria, where a civil war has been raging since 2011.

The migrants have been crossing from Turkey, with about about 1,000 in the city of Edirne on Wednesday, waiting to organise a crossing into Greece. Their journey would then take them to Macedonia and Serbia.