14 April 2017

Schengen: tighter border controls

At the initiative of France and Germany, the Schengen Borders Code has been amended: all travellers entering and exiting the Schengen area will now be subject to systematic and thorough border checks.
Content published under the Government Cazeneuve from 2016 06th December to 2017 14th May
Following attacks on France and several other European countries in recent months, and with the continuing threat of terrorism, the European Union, at the instigation of France and Germany, has amended the Schengen Borders Code in order to tighten controls at the external borders of the Schengen area.
The new article 8(2) of the Schengen Borders Code, published in the Official Journal of the European Union on 18 March 2017, comes into effect on 7 April.

The scope of Article 8(2)

Previously, EU nationals were only subject to minimum checks.  To ensure the security of the Schengen area, all travellers (both EU nationals and third country nationals) will now be systematically checked on entering and exiting the Schengen area.
These checks affect land, sea and air borders, and include:
  • verifying the authenticity of the travel document submitted, in order to identify any attempt to use a falsified or stolen document;
  • consulting national, European and international databases, to ensure the person is not the subject of an alert.Customs authorities and border police responsible for border controls are fully mobilised:
  • To ensure checks comply with the new provisions of the Schengen Borders Code;
  • To limit the impact on the flow of people at border crossings.

Matthias Fekl, Minister of the Interior, also pointed out that systematic checks apply equally to the internal borders of the Schengen area, provided that reinstating such checks is, in accordance with the Schengen Code, deemed necessary by the authorities.