Border controls increase illegal immigration

Germany and Austria are stepping up border controls

The authorities in Austria and Germany are increasingly taking action against crime and illegal immigration with joint controls. The Austrian and German federal police as well as the Bavarian state police want to be on the move for the first time in the border area in three strips from this Friday. The Austrian and German federal police also want to control the Brenner together. A stocktaking of the action will be drawn in three months.

In border areas in particular, it is important to coordinate measures across regions, said the spokesman for the Munich Federal Police Directorate, Thomas Borowik, at the start of the controls. The officers look closely at freight trains in particular. "We want to prevent dangerous illegal entry on freight trains early and prevent accidents," said Borowik. The stowaways mostly traveled between or on truck trailers that cross the Brenner by rail.

Less illegal entry attempts

In 2017, almost 1,000 refugees were discovered on freight trains in the area of ​​the Munich Federal Police Directorate. There is a decline in the number of unauthorized entries at the German-Austrian border: in 2017, around 14,600 people tried to enter illegally there, and a good 7,200 of them were turned away. In the first four months of this year there were almost 3800 unauthorized entries and almost 2100 rejections.

In the Schengen area of ​​26 European countries, controls are usually only carried out at the external borders. But since the refugee crisis in 2015, Germany and other countries have reintroduced controls at their internal borders. Contrary to the wishes of the EU Commission, these were extended by a further six months in May.

The reasons given by Germany, Austria, France, Denmark, Sweden and the non-EU country Norway are the unauthorized onward travel of refugees from other Schengen countries and the terrorist threat. In contrast to the justification with the refugee crisis, the EU Commission cannot prohibit controls due to the threat of terrorism.

yy / rb (dpa)