Saturday 01 April 2023

Schengen open border agreement needs an overhaul: Dutch minister

klaas dijkhoffEuropean leaders now agree that the Schengen open border area within the European Union does not work, junior Dutch justice minister Klaas Dijkhoff is quoted as saying on Monday evening.

According to the Telegraaf, Dijkhoff said the future of the Schengen agreement will be on the agenda at the next European summit in December.  The minister was speaking in Brussels ahead of this week’s EU summit with a number of African states on Malta.

In addition, the Dublin agreement which states refugees should remain in the first safe country they reach – such as Greece and Italy – also needs overhauling, Dijkhoff said.

Dijkhoff said some aspects of the Schengen agreement, such as passport-free travel, should be kept but that he is not yet sure how this can be arranged.

Some Schengen countries, including Germany, have introduced border controls in an effort to stop so many refugees arriving. This, said Dijkhoff, is not an ideal situation. ‘We need to develop decent agreements which help in a structural way,’ he said.

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