Wave of EU-Bound Migrants Enter Serbia

Wave of EU-Bound Migrants Enter SerbiaWave of EU-Bound Migrants Enter Serbia

In a new human wave surging through the Balkans, thousands of exhausted migrants from the Middle East, Asia and Africa crossed on foot Monday from Macedonia into Serbia on their way to Western Europe.

Nearly 10,000 migrants, including many women with babies and small children mostly from Syria, crossed into Serbia over the weekend. Hundreds more entered Macedonia from Greece on Monday, AP reported.

The rush over the border followed Macedonia's decision to lift the blockade of its border with Greece, after thousands of migrants stormed past Macedonian police who tried to stop their entry by force.

On Monday, there were more scuffles between Macedonian police and the incoming migrants on the border with Greece. The police were gradually letting into the country only small groups of migrants, trying to prevent a surge.

In Austria, police said 37 people were injured, seven seriously, when two vans packed with migrants collided Monday near the Hungarian border. Dozens more fled, along with the suspected smugglers.

The new migrant tide that has hit the Western Balkans has worried EU politicians and left the impoverished Balkan countries struggling to cope with the humanitarian crisis.

After entering Serbia, the migrants, fleeing wars and poverty, head toward EU-member Hungary from where they want to continue further north to richer EU countries, such as Germany and Sweden.

After they formally ask for an asylum, migrants have three days to reach the border with Hungary which is rushing to build a barbed wire fence on its border with Serbia to block the migrants.

Serbian Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic said Monday that although the influx is "huge" and Serbia will not "build walls or put them (migrants) in containers and drive them out of the country."