Austria and Germany gathering clothing donations as migrants prepare for winter weather

By REUTERS
November 25, 2015 16:36
1 minute read.

 
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As many of the thousands of migrants reaching the German border lack adequate clothes to face the central European winter, and with the first lows of the season hitting this week, police said that donations of warm clothes have been distributed ahead of the construction of a "winter hall".

Temperatures have approached and even dipped below zero degrees Celsius on the German-Austrian border in recent days.

German and Austrian police are working hard to compile warm clothes handed out by neighbors and volunteers, and try to find new ways of coping with the huge influx.

Germany has taken in the great majority of migrants in a record-breaking flood into Europe of migrants escaping wars and deprivation in the Middle East, Africa and Asia that is likely to exceed 1 million people by year-end.

"It is indeed the case that many people who come here don't have adequate winter clothes. But there are many people that contribute on the Austrian and on the German side of the border bringing warm clothes for children, men and women so that we can help them here. That means that we can provide them with those clothes when they get here," police commissioner and spokesman Rudolf Hoeser said at the Wegscheid shelter at the German-Austrian border.

He explained how local authorities were working to offer busses in early December cover the eight kilometers between the two towns closest to the border to make the migrant's journey a bit easier.

"As [of] December 5 there will be a new procedure. A winter hall will be built in Nebelberg, Austria, from where the migrants will be brought directly to Wegscheid by bus so that they can skip the walk across the border," Hoeser said.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel this week expressed the need to develop the passport-free Schengen rules and insisted on the necessity to distribute refugees across the EU based on quotas will determine whether the agreement will survive.

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