The Austrian Minister of the Interior is against the extension of the European Schengen Agreement

The Austrian Minister of the Interior is against the extension of the European Schengen Agreement
The Austrian Minister of the Interior is against the extension of the European Schengen Agreement

The Austrian Minister of the Interior is against the extension of the European Schengen Agreement

Austria’s interior ministry has announced the country’s objection to the lifting of controls at the borders of EU member states Bulgaria, Croatia and Romania, daily Kurier reported on Friday.

EU Home Affairs Commissioner Ylva Johansson this week proposed adding the three countries to Europe’s free-travel Schengen area, which has no border controls.

Austria’s conservative interior minister, Gerhard Karner, told the newspaper it was “an inappropriate time to vote on enlargement now if the external border system isn’t working”.

Austria is currently confronted with an increase in the influx of refugees who are entering the country via other member states of the European Union along the so-called Balkan route.

According to the Ministry of the Interior, more than 90,000 people have arrived at the Austrian border since the beginning of the year.

Of these, 75,000 had not previously been registered in any other EU country.

A vote on the three countries joining the Schengen area is scheduled for December 8th. The decision requires unanimity.

Bulgaria, Romania, Croatia, the Republic of Ireland and Cyprus are only member states of the European Union but they are not part of the Schengen area, while Iceland, Norway, Switzerland and Liechtenstein are members although not members of the European bloc.

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