Friday, 13 May 2011

The end of passport free travel across the EU?

EU governments are moving closer to reinstating national passport controls at borders across 26 countries across Europe.
This could be seen as a significant blow to one of the cornerstones of integrated Europe and a revision of the passport-free travel system across Europe known as the Schengen system.
An agreement has also been made to tackle immigration by pushing for readmission accords with Middle East and African which means that refugees would need to return to their country of origin.

The policy shift has been driven by France and Italy who have been affected by a small influx of refugees from Tunisia. The issue raised will be discussed at an EU Summit next month with the reforms needing to go through European Parliament where it is likely to face strong resistance.

The current border-free system links 400m people in 22 EU member countries and the move to segment this freedom has come as the nationalist right have made political ground in recent years with Denmark announcing it would unilaterally re-erect controls on its borders with Germany and Sweden.

We will keep you updated on how this story progresses.

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