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Thousands in Vienna rally in support of refugees

Monday, August 31, 2015 - 01:18

Thousands gather in the Austrian capital to show their support for the hundreds of migrants fleeing war and poverty that have arrived in the European Union. Yiming Woo reports.

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It's a festival-like atmosphere in Vienna, as 20,000 people march for the fair and respectful treatment of refugees. Asylum rules have collapsed under the strain of an unprecedented wave of migration to the European Union. As ministers struggle to find a solution to the crisis, many of the people gathered here call for Europe to be more welcoming. (SOUNDBITE) (German) SINGER AND HUMAN RIGHTS ACTIVIST, WILLI RESETARITS, SAYING: "What we have heard today is 'Say it loud, say it clear, refugees are welcome here,' and other similar sayings. It is about a culture of welcoming and not controlling the people who are fleeing death. We can't solve all the problems but we must be open-minded and have an open heart." The rally comes just days after 71 migrants were found dead in a truck on an Austrian highway. Thousands of people, many fleeing Syria's civil war, are passing through the country bound for Germany. The Germans expect some 800,000 migrants this year and Chancellor Angela Merkel has called for other EU countries to take in a greater share.

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Thousands in Vienna rally in support of refugees

Monday, August 31, 2015 - 01:18