Hundreds of refugees, predominantly from Afghanistan and Syria, were stranded for hours as they tried to enter the Berlin Office of Health and Social Affairs (LaGeSo) in the early hours of Monday morning. A group of refugees crossed the barricades to gain early access to the registration point. However, the security forces called upon them to form queues and wait for their turn to enter the LaGaSo building. Tensions were high as refugees sought to register and consequently receive social help. German authorities are expecting 800,000 refugees to arrive in Germany during 2015, an estimated 40,000 of whom will arrive in Berlin. Germany has emerged as the priority destination for many Syrian refugees travelling to the EU after Chancellor Angela Merkel announced that the country would suspend the Dublin regulation, essentially granting Syrian asylum seekers special status. Authorities estimate that up to one million people could apply for asylum in Germany by the end of 2015. However, following huge numbers entering the country, the government has suspended the Schengen agreement and reintroduced border checks.
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