Schengen countries to reintroduce national border control

By | May 13, 2011

If you’ve ever crossed borders in most of Europe – at the airport, by ferry or by road – you know that you don’t get ‘controlled’ as you enter the next country. That is about to change. To blame, claim France and Italy, is the Arab Spring. So many people are fleeing North Africa to Europe that countries need to be able to control entry nationally, instead of as a region.

Denmark is the other story. They introduced border control unilaterally, even before Schengen countries reached the agreement on national border control. Their reason? Cross-border crime. But scratch the surface and you find the handiwork of the right-wing, populist Danish People’s Party, which is allied to the centre-right government. The party is the third largest in the parliament, meaning that it can push for tougher immigration laws, with the threat to block key legislation if they are not introduced. The remark of Pia Kjaersgaard, leader of the party after border control was reintroduced: “I have worked hard for this.”

As you probably know, right-wing, populist parties are on the rise in Europe. For more on them, see this BBC piece.

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