Schengen is losing ground fast revealing Europe’s clear inability to deal with migration crisis

Press conference by Dimitris Avramopoulos, Commissioner in Charge of Migration, Home Affairs and Citizenship, on the adoption of final Visa Liberalisation Reports for Georgia, Ukraine, and Kosovo. © European Union, 2015 / Source: EC - Audiovisual Service / Photo: Georges Boulougouris.

Press conference by Dimitris Avramopoulos, Commissioner in Charge of Migration, Home Affairs and Citizenship, on the adoption of final Visa Liberalisation Reports for Georgia, Ukraine, and Kosovo. © European Union, 2015 / Source: EC – Audiovisual Service / Photo: Georges Boulougouris.

It was last Monday when Sweden decided to impose ID-checks at its borders with Denmark. Of course, this action didn’t remain unanswered by Denmark which tightened controls at its southern border with Germany. This anti-Schengen spirit has been created by the influx of migrants and refugees coming to Europe daily in thousands and is meant to stop undocumented migrants from reaching the aforementioned countries. EU member states are realizing the fact that Europe cannot put an end to this crisis and are taking measures in order to protect themselves.

The year that recently ended was the most intense in terms of migration and refugee waves coming to Europe from countries such as Iraq, Syria, and Afghanistan. This crisis has divided the Old Continent leading to the creation of border controls, fences and walls, increased the popularity of anti-migration extremist political parties and is responsible for the thousands of deaths of migrants trying to cross the Mediterranean or the Aegean sea by boat.

But instead of focusing and target to the causes of this crisis, a more individualistic approach is being taken. As Mark Rhinard, an expert on the European Union at the Swedish Institute of International Affairs said: “It’s basically every country for itself now”. Hence, when countries such as Sweden, which was famous for its humanitarian spirit shown to all Syrians fleeing their country in order to escape from war conditions (received more than 160.000 refugees), are imposing ID checks to reduce the incoming migrants, then one could seriously worry who is going to support the Schengen after all.

Is Schengen agreement doomed to fail?

Denmark’s decision to impose controls at its borders with Germany led to the “furious” reaction of the latter stating that Schengen could well be doomed to fall. German foreign ministry spokesman Martin Schaefer said: “Schengen is very important but it is in danger.” Furthermore, German Chancellor Angela Merkel urged the rest of the bloc for a “joint European solution” on the issue. Her spokesman Steffen Seibert mentioned also added that: “The solution won’t take place on national borders between country A and country B”.

However, there are quite a few European countries (e.g. Poland, Hungary, Slovakia) which have already openly expressed their anti-migrant sentiment thus putting in great risk the Schengen agreement. What is more, senior officials involved in the policy-making have already been expressing the terrible failure probability of Schengen. More specifically, an ambassador in Brussels stated that: “If the flow of refugees is not slowed down in four to six months, people really think Schengen is in terminal trouble”.

According to Abc news, the European Commission “is expected to unveil in March “targeted” modifications to the rulebook that would tighten the external borders and improve Europe’s asylum application rules”. Migration crisis is changing Europe one way or another. The question that matters the most though is whether EU will come out more united or strongly divided after experiencing the full range of this crisis’ consequences.

EU’s inability to overcome Schengen’s fracture

Europe has taken measures especially during 2015 in order to reduce the negative consequences of the migration crisis which has become one of the “hot” issues in the European Commission’s agenda.

However, despite its efforts, only 160.000 refugees have been relocated from Greece and Italy to the rest EU countries so far in a plan to spread migrants more evenly across Europe. This plan has been receiving great resistance if one imagines that 1 million refugees have crossed into the bloc only in 2015 according to the International Organisation for Migration (IOM).

It seems that the EU is unable to implement mandatory measures to its member states to receive further refugees leaving it to their voluntary discretion. And this will keep on deteriorating since the terrorist attacks in Paris last November after which France imposed border controls with its neighboring countries and the climate of fear that has been created in the event of future terrorist attacks.

Moreover, the EU economy will also be “injured” by the border controls that are imposed by many of its countries. This will have a direct impact on the EU citizens and companies which are transferring goods making their jobs far more difficult. Particularly, Mark Rhinard, expert on the European Union at the Swedish Institute of International Affairs, said: “As soon as it starts to bite economically, people are going to start to ask: Is this the right solution to the problem?'”.

All in all, Schengen is most likely about to change in order to survive in an area where refugees’ crisis seems to be the Gordian knot for the EU officials and member states, revealing the long existing structural flaws of the project.

Follow Chris on Twitter @CAnyfantis

Advertising

the sting Milestone

Featured Stings

Can we feed everyone without unleashing disaster? Read on

These campaigners want to give a quarter of the UK back to nature

How to build a more resilient and inclusive global system

Stopping antimicrobial resistance would cost just USD 2 per person a year

COP21 Breaking News_03 December: Transport Industry Drive for Improved Energy Efficiency and Electro-Mobility to Stem High Growth of Emissions

‘We need to do more’ to transform the world, deputy UN chief tells African audiences

Nuclear testing has ‘disastrous consequences’ for people and planet, General Assembly told

How digital infrastructure can help us through the COVID-19 crisis

As the Universal Declaration of Human Rights turns 70 – is it time for a new approach?

Yemen bus attack just the latest outrage against civilians: UN agencies

Industrial price dive may lead to point of no return

Poverty data never tells the whole story

The European Internet is not neutral and neither is the Commissioner

With Libyans now ‘fighting the wars of others’ inside their own country, UN envoy urges Security Council action to end violence

More answers from Facebook ahead of Parliament hearing today

Engaging ‘head and mind’, key for effective learning, says UNESCO chief on Literacy Day

EU attempts to make new deal with Turkey as relations deteriorate

Libya: UN Mission condemns deadly attack against police in country’s south-east

Alarming level of reprisals against activists, human rights defenders, and victims – new UN report

The next start-up cities that will transform the global economy

Greece leaves EU aid program, gets last 15 billion euro

Indonesia: Psychological impact on earthquake survivors turns villages into ‘ghost towns’

The 3 traps when it comes to blockchain and business – and how to avoid them

Tuesday’s Daily Brief: hate speech, dementia, Libya and Yemen, human rights in Brazil and Lebanon

Alexandre in Czech Republic

London is becoming the world’s first National Park City

This is how the tech giants are helping tackle coronavirus

Britain’s Brexit election is its most volatile in memory – and 3 other superlatives about the snap poll

Germany is the world’s most innovative economy

LETTER FROM AFGHANISTAN: Elections serve up food for thought, for Afghan youth

New skills needed for medical students in Industry 4.0

UN commemorates International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People

What is carbon offsetting?

The gateway to carbon pricing? Air pollution policy

$1.4 billion needed this year to fund UN’s agency for Palestine refugees

UN Envoy ‘confident’ deal can be reached to avert further violence around key Yemeni port city

Coronavirus: European roadmap shows path towards common lifting of containment measures

Agreement reached on new EU measures to prevent electricity blackouts

Military operation in northeast Syria could see unintentional release of ISIL affiliates: UN chief

UN appeals for international support as flood waters rise in wake of second Mozambique cyclone

Following the World Cup? Then you’re watching high-performing migrants at work

The vegan economy is booming – and Big Food wants a slice of it

Ongoing insecurity in Darfur, despite ‘remarkable developments’ in Sudan: UN peacekeeping chief

EU leaders agree to delay Brexit until 31 October

Business can be profitable AND drive progress on societal priorities

UN condemns ‘heinous’ suicide attack on education centre in Afghanistan

ACP-EU Parliamentary Assembly: strengthening the partnership

Ocean Conference has potential to be a ‘global game-changer’

Gender equality in STEM is possible. These countries prove it

COP21 Breaking News_05 December: Carbon Price Needed for Climate Change Success

The EU’s trading partners: US, China and the rest

UNICEF delivers medical supplies to Gaza in wake of deadly protests

Agreement on linking the emissions trading systems of the EU and Switzerland

Manufacturers Get Smarter for Industry 4.0

“Smoking steam instead of tobacco, are the E-cigarettes a safer alternative?”

Syrians still living on ‘razor edge’ as UN launches $8.8 billion dollar appeal

Main results of European Council of 18/10/2018

International data flows: Commission launches the adoption of its adequacy decision on Japan

MWC 2016 LIVE: Mobile World Congress shows off planes, trams and automobiles

Largest joint UN humanitarian convoy of the war, reaches remote Syrian settlement

UNIDO promotes post-harvest excellence for mangoes in the Mekong River Delta of Viet Nam

Commission hardens its stance against carmakers ensuring emissions reductions targets

Israel is joining forces with Arab states to save coral from climate change destruction

Does the world have strong enough institutions to handle risks like Trump and Brexit?

More Stings?

Advertising

Speak your Mind Here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s