Desperate migrants doing whatever it takes to reach Europe

HUNGARY -- On Monday, European leaders called an emergency meeting to solve the worst refugee crisis since World War II. Hundreds of thousands have fled war and poverty in the Middle East and North Africa.

They are pouring into Europe by sea and by a new land route from Turkey to Hungary, which has been overwhelmed by the arrival of so many.

Mohammed Bazav and his friends walked 12 hours straight Monday from Serbia to finally cross the border to Hungary.

Hungary builds fence to stem flow of migrants

"We don't sleep, we don't sleep. Look into my eyes, straight. We don't eat, just walking. Just walking," Bazav said.

Like thousands of others, he fled the war in Syria in search of a better life in Europe.

But his fight to reach Germany almost ended.

rtx1pu25.jpg
Syrian migrants cross under a fence as they enter Hungary at the border with Serbia, near Roszke, August 27, 2015. Bernadett Szabo/Reuters

A 13-foot fence topped with razor wire is Hungary's solution to the flood of refugees pouring in. The fence runs about 115 miles along its border with Serbia.

The Hungarian government has been racing to get the fence finished by the end of the month. And they're almost there. The fence is what refugees are facing on the Serbian side of the border and the message could not be clearer.

All the refugees CBS News found crowding on the Serbian side are desperate to get across before it's too late.

Hungary also plans to set up holding camps, and to crack down on those it claims are crossing the border illegally.

2015-08-31t212229z1988481338gf10000188456rtrmadp3europe-migrants-hungary.jpg
Migrants jostle for positions to board a train as ticket control rules now mandate each passenger to have allocated seats on trains bound for the West from Budapest, Hungary, on August 31, 2015. REUTERS

On Monday, Hungarian police were handing out water and sandwiches to the migrants. But those who accepted the offer were not allowed to leave.

Fearing it was the first step to being deported, some broke out and bolted back toward Serbia.

Those with children had little choice but to be taken to a makeshift camp and apply for asylum in Hungary -- where hardly anyone wants to stay. CBS News was not allowed to speak with them.

Faced with that uncertainty, Bazav and his friends decided not to trust the police.

"We all say no," he said. "We all say no."

They headed off through the cornfields, before another escape route was closed.

They may have reached Europe, but they're still on the run.

It's a confusing situation, and hundreds of other migrants were allowed to board trains Monday to Germany.

European ministers have called for emergency talks, but in two weeks.