By Michael Birnbaum,
BRUSSELS — As the wave of asylum-seekers reaching Europe’s shores continued to expand on Monday, Britain, France and Germany announced new measures to take them in.
But the plans fell far short of the need, and there were few signs that Europe was moving closer to a comprehensive agreement about how to handle the refugee crisis.
French President Francois Hollande said Monday that his nation would take in 24,000 people from frontline E.U. nations. British Prime Minister David Cameron plans to resettle up to 20,000 Syrian refugees. And German Chancellor Angela Merkel said that she was reallocating up to $6.6 billion to deal with the influx.
German authorities said they had taken in far more asylum-seekers than they had expected in a dramatic weekend after Hungary dropped attempts to bar their passage across Europe. Hundreds of migrants spent a shivering night on the border between Serbia and Hungary, after a new reception camp there was filled over capacity. And in Greece, the refugees’ first port of call, authorities called for emergency E.U. assistance as islands received asylum-seekers faster than they could be ferried to the mainland.
[For refugees, it’s destination Germany]
There was no sign the crisis was easing, with a deep well of millions of refugees fueling a nearly endless supply of people making the risky voyage to Europe. Greece’s coast guard said it had rescued more than 2,000 asylum-seekers in the Mediterranean Sea since Friday alone.
Britain’s plan would drastically expand its government relocation programs after accusations that it wasn’t doing enough. So far, Britain has resettled 216 Syrian refugees through its government program, far less than other European countries such as Germany and Sweden.
Cameron said Monday that his nation was acting with “head and heart” by accepting refugees only from camps around the Syrian border and not from among the thousands who have already poured into Europe in risky voyages.
“We want to encourage people not to make that dangerous crossing in the first place,” Cameron said.
In Germany, pressures were mounting over the country’s open-door response to refugees who made it to their country.
“We have a moving, in some ways breathtaking, weekend behind us,” Merkel said in Berlin on Monday. Authorities in Munich said they expected to take in 10,000 more people on Monday after a …Read More
Britain, France to accept some refugees as flow accelerates – Washington Post
By Michael Birnbaum,