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Germany still favors European solution on refugees after Austrian decision

BERLIN (Reuters) - German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s spokesman said on Wednesday Berlin still favored a joint European solution in the refugee crisis after Austria announced plans to introduce a limit on the number of people allowed to claim asylum.

“That is a decision by the Austrian government that I do not comment”, government spokesman Steffen Seibert said.

“The German government still favors a joint European solution that tackles the causes of migration in order to reduce the number of refugees significantly and noticeably.”

Austria said on Wednesday it would cap the number of people allowed to claim asylum this year at less than half last year’s figure, and Chancellor Werner Faymann said border controls would have to be stepped up “massively”.

Reporting by Andreas Rinke; Writing by Michael Nienaber; Editing by Joseph Nasr