- Title: EUROPE-MIGRANTS/GERMANY WELCOME Germany welcomes migrants offloaded by Hungary
- Date: 5th September 2015
- Summary: MUNICH, GERMANY (SEPTEMBER 05, 2015) (REUTERS) TOP SHOT SHOWING POLICE AND TENTS AT MUNICH STATION WHERE REFUGEES HAVE A PRELIMINARY REGISTRATION BEFORE BOARDING BUSES FOR ASYLUM-SEEKERS HOMES LOCAL PEOPLE CHEERING AS ASYLUM SEEKERS WALK PAST CLAPPING THEIR HANDS LOCAL RESIDENTS CLAPPING AND CHEERING AS MIGRANTS ARRIVE AND WALK PAST SMILING WOMAN RUNNING FORWARD WITH HER CHILD AND GREETING FAMILY MEMBERS LOCAL RESIDENTS CLAPPING AND CHEERING AS MIGRANTS ARRIVE MIGRANTS WAVING AS RESIDENTS CLAP AND CHEER / MIGRANT HOLDING UP A POSTER OF GERMAN CHANCELLOR ANGELA MERKEL RESIDENTS CLAPPING AND CHEERING AS MIGRANTS ARRIVE, VARIOUS CHILDREN ARRIVING DRAGGING SUITCASES / WOMAN AND CHILD ARRIVING AND WAVING MIGRANTS ARRIVING AND JOINING THE CREW TO REGISTER CLOSE UP OF MIGRANTS POSSESSIONS AS THEY QUEUE VARIOUS QUEUES OF MIGRANTS OUTSIDE REGISTRATION TENTS LOCAL RESIDENTS GREETING MIGRANTS AND HANDING OUT LEAFLETS AND SAYING HELLO / MIGRANTS GOING TO THEM AND COLLECTING (SOUNDBITE)(German) MUNICH RESIDENT ALBERT WAGNER SAYING: "I come from Regensburg and came down to Munich to be with the Munich residents when they greeted their guests like a world-city, with open hearts. That is why I am here." (PEOPLE CLAP AND SHOUT 'BRAVO') (SOUNDBITE)(German) MUNICH RESIDENT BARBARA LUEHERS SAYING: "(I am here) because we are living so well and we can finally help them, these people - it is just that we have to give them what we can, we have to show them they are welcome, and it is terrible how they were treated in Hungary." MIGRANTS WALKING PAST POLICE AND GETTING ONTO BUSES TO BE TAKEN TO ASYLUM HOMES YOUNG MIGRANTS GETTING ONTO BUSES MIGRANT IN BUS GIVING THE 'THUMBS UP' SIGN, ANOTHER THE VICTORY SIGN BUSES BEING LOADED REFUGEES IN BUS SMILING AND STICKING THEIR THUMBS UP VARIOUS OF BUS GOING TO LANDSHUT PULLING AWAY FAMILY ON BUS TOPSHOT OF BUSES AT TEMPORARY REGISTRATION CENTRE AT MUNICH STATION
- Embargoed: 20th September 2015 13:00
- Location: Germany
- Country: Germany
- Topics: General
- Reuters ID: LVACEUQMQPCVUDVCYXKG87CDHEI6
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Refugees received a warm welcome from local residents in Munich on Saturday (September 5) after Germany threw open its borders to thousands of exhausted migrants.
Authorities say up to 10,000 migrants were expected to arrive in Munich on Saturday on special trains from Budapest where the right-wing government had tried to stop them but was overwhelmed by the sheer numbers reaching Europe's frontiers, the scenes highlighting Europe's worst refugee crisis since the Yugoslav wars of the 1990s.
Local residents came to the station to welcome the asylum seekers to their final destinations, clapping and cheering as families arrived smiling.
They handed out information leaflets and aid and clapped hands with migrants as they walked past.
Albert Wagner had spent two hours coming down from Regensburg in northern Bavaria to welcome the travellers.
"I come from Regensburg and came down to Munich to be with the Munich residents when they greeted their guests like a world-city, with open hearts. That is why I am here," he said as people cheered "bravo" around him.
Another local resident Barbara Luehers said they had so much to give in Germany and it was time to help - criticising Hungary for not doing, as she said.
"We are living so well and we can finally help them, these people - it is just that we have to give them what we can, we have to show them they are welcome, and it is terrible how they were treated in Hungary," she said.
An official of the German state of Bavaria said on Saturday evening that 6,000 refugees had arrived at Munich central station in the last 12 hours and that the total number would probably rise to 8,000 until midnight. In the evening, around 1,000 refugees would be redirected by train to the west German city of Dortmund, the official said. A train carrying further 450 refugees would go to the west German city of Frankfurt-Main.
Berlin's decision to open its borders for Syrians was an exceptional case made out of humanitarian reasons, according to Germany's interior ministry, saying in a communique that Europe's so-called Dublin rules, which require migrants to apply for asylum in the first European Union country they arrive, had not been suspended. The decision to allow Syrian refugees stranded in Hungary to travel to Germany was made in light of the current "emergency situation", according to the statement.
Bavarian officials said that so far around 2,000 refugees had arrived at Munich train station on Saturday and that more trains were expected until midnight.
After days of confrontation and chaos, Hungary's government deployed over 100 buses overnight to take thousands of migrants to the Austrian border where they boarded trains bound for Germany. Hungary has insisted the bus rides were a one-off, even as hundreds more migrants assembled in Budapest on Saturday, part of a seemingly relentless surge through the Balkan peninsula from Turkey and Greece.
For days, several thousand camped outside Budapest's main railway station, where trains to western Europe were cancelled as the government insisted all those entering Hungary be registered and their asylum applications processed in the country as per EU rules.
But on Friday (September 4), in separate rapid-fire developments, hundreds broke out of a teeming camp on Hungary's frontier with Serbia, escaped a stranded train, and took to the highway by foot chanting "Germany, Germany!"
The government appeared to throw in the towel, ordering over 100 buses to take them to the border.
Once in Munich the migrants are passing through initial registration centres before being moved to asylum-seekers homes spread around Germany.
The scenes were emblematic of a crisis - about 350,000 refugees and migrants have reached the border of the European Union this year - that has left the 28-nation EU groping for solutions amid sharp divisions over burden-sharing.
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