Border control in the EU

Anna-Maria Tukiainen

The city of SchengenThe recent expansion of the Schengen Agreement area to new EU member states has improved the movement of people between countries. The EU is strengthening its external border control because of resent Middle East conflicts and illegal immigration waves. EU member states with an external border play a major role in the fight against borderless crime on land and sea and at airports. Finland and the Finnish Border Guard have played a central role in the development of the EU’s border security.

There are about 8 million illegal immigrants in the EU. Because of lack of an effective registration system it’s difficult to keep track of actual figures of people entering and leaving the EU. Key routes are Central Europe, the Balkans and the Canary Islands. Also in the Mediterranean countries the illegal immigrant situation is getting worse. The latest immigration battle is between Berlusconi’s Italy and France’s Sarkozy.Berlusconi and Sarkozy discussing about the migration issue

The Berlusconi government issued the 26 000 illegally arrived Tunisians temporary residence permits so they can travel freely inside the EU. Most French-speaking Tunisians are heading to France taking the immigration wave to North.  The refugees can now freely travel to the EU countries that joined the Schengen Agreement and this has upset France. The Member States should give up control of the borders to the free movement of EU citizens. But should the external borders of the Schengen area be better controlled to seal the “leaky” boarders?

The arrival of tens of thousands of North Africans has caused political fall-out across Europe with the EU preparing to reintroduce passport checks among Schengen-zone countries, after pressure from France and Italy. The cracks in the Schengen zone appeared to widen when Denmark decided to reinstate controls on its borders with Germany and Sweden to clamp down on drug and weapons smuggling. The solution is to improve the existing mechanism and not to allow member states to reintroduce border control by themselves without a consultation with the Commission and the Parliament.

  • Quick facts:
      • In 2010 104,049 detections of illegal border crossing at the sea and land external borders
      • In 2009 figure was 104,599
      • Important changes in 2011 or 2012, with the possible entry of Romania and Bulgaria into the Schengen area and Croatia’s possible accession to the EU.
      • Spain was the Member State in which the highest number of cases of forged document use was reported.

Links about the Schengen Agreement and border control:

Border Control Code

Schengen Information System (SIS)

Newly-issued EU passports

External Borders Agency


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One Response to “Border control in the EU”

  1. peterverweij Says:

    acceptable story. Use split or extended post. Pictures included and links to video, whu video not embedded? First link is not working. Text is scanable but sub headings missing. Story is general, summerizing old news about France and Italy. Should have mentioned that Italy issued Schengen visa and that France was checking their money. Missing oral sources and a finish angle.
    What is the link between story and quick facts. Story created by Anna maria only?

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