Germany on 13 September 2015 introduced border controls along its Austrian border to check migrant influx from Syria.
The controls along the borders imply that its temporary exit from the Schengen Agreement that facilitates unhindered movement of people within the EU region.
Germany took the decision against the backdrop of arrival of 13000 migrants on 12 September 2015 alone to the country by trains via the Austrian border. These were part of the 63000 migrants entered the country since August 2014.
The timing of Germany’s decision assumes significance as the European Commission (EC) on 9 September 2015 moved a proposal to relocate 120000 migrants among the European Union countries.
The move is aimed at reducing pressure on frontier states like Greece and Italy that are flooded with lakhs of migrants from Syria, Afghanistan and North African nations.
EC formula on internal relocation
As per the EC’s proposal the internal relocation of migrants should take place on the basis of a mandatory distribution key using objective and quantifiable criteria-40 percent of the size of the population, 40 percent of the GDP, 10 percent of the average number of past asylum applications, 10 percent of the unemployment rate.
Further, the formula applies to nationalities of applicants with an EU-wide average recognition rate of 75 percent or higher.
• Its objective is to create borderless area within the European Union.
• It facilitates movement of people across international borders without passport and passing through mandatory check posts.
• It was signed in June 1985 at Schengen in Luxembourg and became operational on 26 March 1995.
• It is a core part of EU law and all EU member states without an opt-out which have not already joined the Schengen Area are legally obliged to do so when technical requirements have been met.
• It currently consists of 26 European countries covering a population of over 400 million people and an area of around 4.3 million square kilometers. Several non-EU countries are also included in the area.
• Member countries are: Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and Liechtenstein.
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What: Became effective
When: 14 September 2015