Press release


Schengen/border-free zone

Populist wind reaches EP as MEPs fail to clearly support EU approach to border controls


The European Parliament civil liberties committee today voted on its provisional position on proposals aimed at revising the Schengen border system, with regard to the reimposition of border controls. The Greens believe any reintroduction of border controls should be subject to EU-level approval and regretted the failure of MEPs on the civil liberties committee to unequivocally endorse this approach. Commenting on the proposals, Greens/EFA MEP Tatjana Zdanoka (Latvia) said:

"The populist wind that is sweeping through EU member states with regard to the EU's Schengen border-free system today reached the European Parliament. Regrettably, a majority of MEPs on the civil liberties committee failed to unequivocally support proposals by the Commission to ensure that any reintroduction of border controls be subject to EU-level approval.

"Schengen is one of the EU’s major and tangible success stories. The Schengen border-free system is trans-national in its conception and purpose; it is therefore common-sense that any decision 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. The reintroduction of border controls completely undermines the essence of the Schengen system and any decision to do so must only be a last resort. The Greens will continue to push to ensure the Commission's proposals win out.”