European leaders plan to secure borders

  • Migrants and refugees board a train by climbing through the windows as they try to avoid a police barrier at the station in Tovarnik, Croatia, Sept. 20, 2015. Police said Saturday more people are coming in from Serbia, mostly near the eastern border town of Tovarnik, where there are already around 2,500 people waiting for transport.
  • A Syrian refugee boy cries while he and his family try to board a train at the station in Tovarnik, Croatia, Sept. 20, 2015.
  • Croatian riot police officers try to clear a railway track after thousands of refugees broke a police line to board a train at the station in Tovarnik, Croatia, Sept. 20, 2015.
  • Syrian refugees wash themselves near the border with Serbia in Tovarnik, Croatia, Sept. 18, 2015. Croatia on Friday declared it was overwhelmed and began busing migrants in convoys back to Hungary and closing its border crossings with Serbia.
  • Migrants walk near to the border between Serbia and Croatia. in Sid, Serbia, Sept. 17, 2015. Croatia has suddenly become the latest hotspot in the 1,000-mile plus exodus toward Western Europe after Hungary sealed off its border Tuesday with a razor-wire fence and then used tear gas, batons and water cannons to keep the migrants out.
  • Refugees walk at night after crossing the border between Hungary and Serbia under the Ursa Major constellation near Roszke, Hungary, Sept. 13, 2015.
  • A Syrian refugee stands atop a watchtower within Serbian territory while looking for a place to cross the new fence built by the Hungarian authorities to curb the numbers of refugees flowing into Hungary, near Roszke, Sept. 12, 2015.
  • Syrian refugees help a wounded comrade to get into Hungary a few meters after crossing the border with Serbia in Roszke, Hungary, Sept. 11, 2015.
  • Hungarian Army soldiers patrol the fence recently built at the border with Serbia in Roszke, Hungary, Sept. 12, 2015.
  • A Syrian refugee waits in a queue to be loaded onto a bus heading to a refugee camp in Roszke, near the Serbian border, Hungary, Sept. 13, 2015.
  • Night scene in Roszke, near the Serbian border, Hungary, Sept. 13, 2015.
  • A Syrian refugee helps an old disabled Syrian woman catch a bus at a collecting camp in Roszke, Hungary, near the Serbian border, Sept. 13, 2015.
  • Syrian refugees wait to board a bus to a temporary refugee camp at a collecting camp less than a mile from the border between Hungary and Serbia in Roszke, Hungary, Sept. 12, 2015.
  • A Syrian child protects himself from the sun at a collecting camp in Morahalum, Hungary, near the Serbian border, Sept. 12, 2015.
  • Two young Afghan refugees sleep in a collecting camp near Morahalum, Hungary, after crossing the Hungarian- Serbian border, Sept. 12, 2015.
  • A Syrian woman cries after losing one of her sons, Ahmed, 5, a few minutes before arriving at the border between Hungary and Serbia, Sept. 14, 2015. Ahmed was finally found at the collecting camp.
  • Hungarian soldiers patrol the border near the fence that separates Hungary from Serbia, near Roszke, Hungary, Sept. 13, 2015.
  • A refugee from Iraq carries a girl through a corn field while trying to avoid police after crossing the border between Serbia and Hungary near Roszke, Hungary, Sept. 12, 2015.
  • Two Syrian refugees run acres a field to avoid police and being taken to an identification camp near Roszke, Hungary, Sept. 11, 2015.
  • An Afghan refugee looks through the window of a train in Roszke, Hungary, near the Serbian border, Sept. 14, 2015.
  • A Syrian man carries his son across railroad tracks that lead to Hungary a few meters before entering the country from Serbian territory, Sept. 13, 2015.
  • A Syrian woman and her child are seen near a rubbish pile at a collecting camp built near Roszke, Hungary, Sept. 13, 2015.
  • A Syrian refugee breaks into tears while hugging his son before crossing the border between Serbia and Hungary near Roszke, Hungary, Sept. 13, 2015.
  • Refugees run away from police through the fields around Roszke, Hungary, a few miles from the Serbian border, Sept. 14, 2015.
  • A Syrian woman boards a train after police organize the transportation of refugees at the train station of Roszke, Hungary, near the Serbian border, Sept. 14, 2015.
  • Refugees walk in Roszke, Hungary, near the Serbian border, Sept. 13, 2015.
  • Syrian refugees play cards within Serbian territory near the border crossing of Roszke, Hungary, Sept. 12, 2015.
  • An exhausted Syrian refugee lies on the ground trying to get some rest after running through the fields to escape police in Roszke, near the Serbian border, Sept. 11, 2015.
  • Hungarian police officers are reflected in the window of a bus while a refugee waits to be loaded on a train on the way to the Austrian border at the train station of Roszke, near the Serbian border, Hungary, Sept. 14, 2015.
  • A Hungarian soldier helps build one of the final pieces of fence before the official closing of the border between Hungary and Serbia near Roszke, Hungary, Sept. 14, 2015.

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Leaders of the European Union held a summit on Wednesday to develop a plan to secure its external borders, ensure asylum policies are carried out in all member states and restore free movement in the Schengen zone.

“We must prepare a concrete plan, which must finally appear in place of the arguments and the chaos we have witnessed in the last weeks,” European Union President Donald Tusk said before the summit.

The union voted on Tuesday to distribute 120,000 asylum seekers who are currently in Greece, Hungary and Italy among member states based on the size and wealth of each country. Germany would take the most refugees, just more than 30,000, and Malta would take the the least, 133.

The Czech Republic, Romania, Slovakia and Hungary opposed the plan. Together, the first three states would be expected to accept more than 9,000 refugees.

Hungary’s government does not think the plan will work because most refugees want to go to specific countries, mainly Germany. While the leaders were meeting, about 5,000 people were approaching the Austrian border with Hungary.

The Hungarian government made headlines last Tuesday when it announced it had closed the country’s borders.

Thousands of people, most of whom are fleeing Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan, had been arriving at the Hungarian border the days before, hoping to board trains to other countries. About 1,200 made it onto a train the evening before heading to Austria. 

Those who arrived after the closure were trapped in Serbia with a large razor-wire fence between them and the European Union. 

Germany introduced emergency border checks days before Hungary closed its borders to slow down the influx of people. A least 450,000 people have arrived in Germany already this year.

For more feature photography, go to msnbc.com/photography

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