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The Latest: Police seek murder charges over suffocations

Migrant children make a puzzle, depicting the map of Europe, at a new reception center for unaccompanied minors in Athens, Tuesday, Oct. 11, 2016. The Balkan route, used by nearly 1 million refugees and migrants last year to cross to mainland Europe, was closed last March and over 60,000 people are stranded in Greece. (AP Photo/Thanassis Stavrakis)
October 12, 2016 - 4:25 AM

BERLIN - The Latest on the flow of migrants into Europe (all times local):

1:20 p.m.

Hungarian police have recommended murder and smuggling charges against one Afghan and seven Bulgarian suspects for the August 2015 deaths of 71 migrants who suffocated in the back of a refrigerated truck in Austria.

Zotan Boross, head of the National Investigation Bureau's anti-illegal migration department, said Wednesday that international arrest warrants had been issued for three other Bulgarians suspected of being drivers in the Hungary-based smuggling group.

Boross said the Afghan man considered to be the local boss had been living in Hungary since March 2013 as a recognized refugee.

Boross blamed the suspected ringleader's "unscrupulousness and greed" for the tragedy, evidenced by the fact that a day after the deaths of the 71 migrants, Austrian police found 67 migrants in a similar truck being smuggled by the same group.

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1 p.m.

Germany's interior minister says some 213,000 asylum-seekers have arrived in the country this year, keeping it on course for a far lower total in 2016 than last year's 890,000.

Minister Thomas de Maiziere said Wednesday the number of newcomers "is still declining but remains significant." He said the figure he gave for the year's first nine months reflects the number who "actually registered and entered."

De Maiziere's ministry said 272,185 people were registered in a computer system between January and September as incoming asylum-seekers — 15,618 in September, in line with the previous five months' figures.

However, that system doesn't register people by name and the figures have been inflated in the past by people registering multiple times. The number registered last year was initially given as nearly 1.1 million.

News from © The Associated Press, 2016
The Associated Press

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