Austrian soldiers start carrying out checks for refugees and migrants at border with Italy

Austrian soldiers have been deployed to the border with Italy for the first time to block illegal migrants.

The measure, which was announced by Vienna last month, is a significant escalation of border security and comes ahead of elections in October in which the government will try to head off a challenge from Right-wing, anti-immigration parties.

Soldiers, acting in conjunction with police, started carrying out checks on vehicles and trains north of the Brenner Pass, the main crossing point between the two countries.