Sweden, Denmark extend border controls until April

Sweden, Denmark announce extension of border controls until April as refugee influx continues

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

Danish police officers check vehicles at the bordertown of Padborg, Denmark January 4, 2016.

Sweden and Denmark have announced on Thursday that they will extend border controls until April in order to cope with the refugee influx.

Sweden, which had announced border checks on January 4, extended the measures until April 8.

Swedish Interior Minister Anders Ygeman said that "Europe has failed to keep its external borders. As long as there is no common European solution, Sweden is obliged to implement national measures in the short term."

Denmark also announced that the measures in its border with Germany has been extended for 30 more days, which means the controls will last until April 3. Its earlier extensions were on Feb. 2 and again on Feb. 23.

Danish Immigration Minister Inger Stojberg said in a letter to European Migration Commissioner Dimitris Avramopoulos that “It is still the opinion of the Danish government that the Danish border control does not exceed what is strictly necessary in this situation."

Denmark received more than 21,000 asylum applications in 2015, while Sweden received 163,000.

The number of refugee arrivals in Sweden fell after the border checks as the country received only 528 asylum applications over the last seven days, compared to roughly 10,000 new arrivals per week in October.

TRTWorld and agencies