Migration and Home Affairs

Back to Schengen: Commission proposes that the Council allows Member States to maintain temporary controls for another three months

Wednesday, 25 January, 2017

The European Commission has today recommended the Council allows Member States to maintain the temporary controls currently in place at certain internal Schengen borders in Austria, Germany, Denmark, Sweden and Norway for a further period of three months. Despite the progressive stabilisation of the situation and the implementation of a series of measures proposed by the Commission to better manage the external borders and protect the Schengen area, the Commission considers that the conditions of the "Back to Schengen" Roadmap allowing for a return to a normally functioning Schengen area have not yet been entirely fulfilled.

First Vice-President Frans Timmermans said: "Significant progress has been made to lift internal border controls, but we need to solidify it further. This is why we recommend allowing member states concerned to maintain temporary border controls for a further three months." Commissioner for Migration, Home Affairs, and Citizenship Dimitris Avramopoulos said: "Schengen is one of the greatest achievements of EU integration, which we must not take for granted. The European Commission is and remains fully committed to work with Member States in gradually phasing out temporary internal border controls and return to a normal functioning of the Schengen area without internal border control as soon as possible. While over the past months we have been continuously strengthening our measures to address the unprecedented migratory pressure that Europe is facing, we are not there yet unfortunately. That is why we recommend that the Council allows Member States to continue limited temporary internal border controls for another three months, under strict conditions, and only as a last resort."

For more information:

  • IP/17/124: Back to Schengen: Commission proposes that the Council allows Member States to maintain temporary controls for another three months
  • MEMO/17/132: Questions & Answers: A coordinated EU approach for temporary internal border controls