Tensions high on Greece-Macedonia border with thousands of migrants

 Tensions were running high at the border between Greece and Macedonia on Monday with police stepping in to keep order amid the crowd of thousands massed at the frontier to journey to the European Union.

AFP| Updated: Sep 07, 2015, 23:29 PM IST

Gevgelija: Tensions were running high at the border between Greece and Macedonia on Monday with police stepping in to keep order amid the crowd of thousands massed at the frontier to journey to the European Union.

More than 2,000 people entered Macedonia on Monday while at least 8,000 waited on the Greek side to cross into the former Yugoslav republic, according to an AFP photographer on the spot.

As people pushed and shoved in the large crowd, Macedonian police had to move in several times, the interior ministry said.

"With such a large crowd someone always tries to push through and this provokes tensions that police have to contain. But so far we did not have serious incidents," an interior ministry official told AFP, speaking on condition of anonymity.

At least two or three migrants were hit by police with clubs, the AFP photographer said.

On the other side of the border are trains and buses taking the migrants to the border with Serbia in northern Macedonia. From Serbia they head to Hungary, an EU member.

Since Sunday, 5,000 migrants and refugees have been through the reception and registration centre in Gevgelija, on the Macedonian side of the border.

The authorities have delivered 64,522 permits to transit the country since June 19, police said.