At least 28 migrants have drowned off Greece after their boat capsized, Greek authorities said Sunday.
Scores more were rescued near the island of Farmakonisi in the southeastern Aegean Sea, as would-be asylum seekers continue struggling to reach Europe. Nearly 3,000 people have died trying to cross the Mediterranean Sea this year, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) says.
Meanwhile, Austrian police say they rescued 42 people believed to be migrants stowed in a refrigerated flower truck on a highway near the German border on Sunday. Two Iraqis suspected as smugglers were arrested, police said.
Authorities are on high alert after the decomposing remains of 71 people believed to be migrants were found on an eastern Austrian highway last month.
More than 430,000 migrants, including refugees from Syria and Iraq, have crossed the Mediterranean Sea to Europe so far in 2015, according to the IOM.
Austria to Germany train service suspended
German police say some 12,200 refugees seeking asylum in the European Union flooded into the southern German city of Munich Saturday, and authorities fear many of them will be spending their nights outdoors because they have nowhere else to go.
Train service from Austria to Germany was suspended Sunday, rail officials in both countries announced, as Europe grapples with the largest refugee crisis since World War II. Travel in the other direction, from Germany to Austria, was unclear, a spokeswoman for Austrian rail company OeBB said.
On Friday at a meeting in Prague, the foreign ministers of Hungary, the Czech Republic, Poland and Slovakia refused entreaties by their counterparts from wealthier Germany and Luxembourg to accept mandatory migrant quotas, despite the endorsement by the United Nations of a plan that would allow for the distribution of 160,000 migrants among the 28 EU member nations.
Romania’s interior minister on Sunday said his country will not meet the European Union request to take an additional 4,650 people more than the 1,785 asylum seekers it initially agreed to.
Interior Minister Gabriel Oprea says he has a “very clear mandate” from the president and prime minister to refuse the request. He spoke Sunday ahead of an interior ministers’ meeting Monday in Brussels on Europe’s migration crisis.
He also said Romania will vote against having obligatory migrant quotas for EU nations.