The European Parliament and Council yesterday evening reached an agreement on two key legislative files related to the EU’s Schengen border-free system, one on the reintroduction of border controls and one on the evaluation of Schengen. Commenting on the outcome of the proposals to reintroduce border controls under Schengen, Greens/EFA border policy spokesperson Tatjana Ždanoka said:
“Last night's deal confirms the scale-back of the EU's border-free system, at the whim of EU governments. EU member states will retain final say as regards the reintroduction of border controls. This outcome is clearly at odds with the integrity of Schengen and flies in the face of the trans-national nature of the border-free system. It is logical and essential that decisions to temporarily reintroduce border controls be subject to EU-level approval and not left up to the narrow-minded, national whims of individual member states, but this will not be the case. It is a regrettable lack of ambition for this flagship EU policy."
Commenting on agreement on legislation regarding the evaluation of the application of Schengen, Tatjana Ždanoka added:
"While the new provisions providing for EU-level evaluation of Schengen are a positive, the agreement to change the legal base of the system with a view to excluding the European Parliament is nothing short of a scandal. The democratically-elected parliament should clearly have an equal role in evaluating such a core EU policy and the failure to ensure this is a blow to the EU's democratic process.”