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The Latest: Central European ministers discuss migrants

A man boils a kettle at an electricity point in the building of the Kalochori refugee camp, set up in a disused supermarket, on the outskirts of the northern Greek city of Thessaloniki on Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2016. More than 60,000 refugees are stranded in Greece, unable to continue their journeys northward to more prosperous European Union countries after Balkan countries shut down their land borders to refugees earlier this year. (AP Photo/Thanassis Stavrakis)
November 08, 2016 - 6:29 AM

PARIS - The Latest on the influx of migrants into Europe (all times local):

4:25 p.m.

Central European countries have asked Balkan nations to be partners with them on how to handle the continent's migration crisis.

The defence ministers of Austria, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Slovenia, Hungary and Bosnia met in Sarajevo and discussed ways to include their militaries into plans for decreasing the influx of migrants through the Balkans.

As this is not just an EU problem, Bosnia, Serbia, Macedonia and Montenegro should be included into future plans on how to protect the continent's borders, according to Austrian Defence Minister Hans Peter Doskozil.

Czech Defence Minister Martin Stropnicky said that their contribution in keeping the region stable won't be forgotten when their efforts to join the European Union and NATO will be judged.


11:15 a.m.

Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo has inaugurated a new migrant reception centre, which she hopes will prevent migrants from camping in squalid places in the city and ease tensions in affected neighbourhoods.

The centre in a northern district can hold 400 people. City officials said the first group of migrants was expected to arrive later this week.

More than 18,000 migrants have been removed from Paris streets and parks and given shelter since June 2015.

Earlier this month, French authorities cleared a makeshift camp near the Stalingrad metro station where more than 3,000 people camped in tents. The operation followed the relocation of nearly 7,000 people from a camp in Calais on the French side of the English Channel which was called "the jungle" by migrants.


10:30 a.m.

Hungary's prime minister has failed in his attempt to push through constitutional amendments to oppose any future plan by the European Union to resettle asylum seekers among members of the bloc.

Prime Minister Viktor Orban's Fidesz party failed to secure any opposition support and fell two votes short of the two-thirds majority necessary in Tuesday's vote.

Orban proposed the changes after an Oct. 2 referendum in which over 98 per cent of voters supported the government's anti-migrant position. However, the plebiscite was invalid due to low voter turnout.

Analyst Zoltan Cegledi said Orban's failure was a "defeat of power politics ... which puts Orban in the difficult position of having to explain why he isn't capable of achieving anything."

News from © The Associated Press, 2016
The Associated Press

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