Hungary closes crossing used by thousands of refugees
Hungary has closed off a railway track used by tens of thousands of refugees to enter the European Union on foot, launching a crackdown promised by the right-wing government to tackle Europeâ€™s worst refugee crisis in two decades.
Dozens of helmeted police officers, some on horses, took up position on Monday across the track that traverses the border and has been used for months by refugees, many of them Syrian, to enter the EU from Serbia. A helicopter circled overhead.
Refugees were directed to an official pedestrian border crossing around a kilometre away, where hundreds began queuing, the Reuters news agency reported.
Police let small groups through a metal gate in a fence that Hungary has almost finished building along the length of its southern frontier, the EUâ€™s external border. They boarded buses the other side.
Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban, one of Europeâ€™s fiercest opponents of the influx of refugees, said many would face deportation under the new rules, after Hungary in July declared its impoverished neighbour Serbia a â€˜safe countryâ€™ for refugees.
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