EU tells Greece to fix border, heralds Schengen suspension

by Reuters
Friday, 12 February 2016 11:24 GMT

BRUSSELS, Feb 12 (Reuters) - The European Union formally called on Greece on Friday to fix serious holes in its part of the Schengen Area frontier, a move heralding longer-term suspensions of open border rules across Europe due to the migration crisis.

An EU source said the vote in an EU ministerial council was passed despite opposition from Athens. It gives Greece three months to implement 50 recommendations to tighten border checks. As that appears impracticable, it could trigger an unprecedented activation of rules allowing member states to reimpose controls on internal Schengen frontiers for up to two years.

EU officials and diplomats say that the move is not intended to isolate or stigmatise Greece but rather to ensure that border controls elsewhere in Europe, including between Germany and Austria, can remain in place without breaking the law once derogations based on other parts of the Schengen code expire. (Reporting by Alastair Macdonald; Editing by Gabriela Baczynska)

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