July 4, 2020

Sweden tightens border with Denmark to keep out migrants

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The sun sets over the Oresund Bridge between Sweden and Denmark, seen from Lernacken, Sweden, on Sunday Jan. 3, 2016  On upcoming Monday Jan. 4, 2016, new travel restrictions are set to be imposed by Sweden to stem a record flow of migrants, transforming the Oresund bridge between Sweden and Denmark into a striking example of how national boundaries are re-emerging in Europe. (Erland Vinberg /TT via AP, File)  SWEDEN OUT

The sun sets over the Oresund Bridge between and , seen from Lernacken, Sweden, on Sunday Jan. 3, 2016 On upcoming Monday Jan. 4, 2016, new travel restrictions are set to be imposed by Sweden to stem a record flow of migrants, transforming the Oresund bridge between Sweden and into a striking example of how national boundaries are re-emerging in Europe. (Erland Vinberg /TT via AP, File) SWEDEN OUT

BY MEGAN SPECIA From Mashable

Sweden has tightened border controls for those arriving by train, bus and ferry in an attempt to halt the flow of migrants and refugees into the country from mainland Europe.

The new rules went into effect on Monday, and require those passengers arriving in the country to show identification at previously unrestricted border crossings.

To comply with the new Swedish rules, passengers had to show identification Monday to board trains departing from Copenhagen Airport in Denmark to Sweden across a bridge-and-tunnel link.

The neighboring countries are connected by the longest rail and road bridge in Europe, and Denmark has been critical of Sweden’s decision to tighten the border.

Approximately 20,000 commuters cross the Oresund bridge connecting the Danish capital and the Swedish city of Malmo daily, according to the BBC.

The Danish Transport Minister Hans Christian Schmidt called the new restrictions sad and “extremely annoying” for travellers.

The border controls will also mean an end for direct journeys from Copenhagen’s main railway station to Sweden which will add significant travel time for commuters.

The new rules appeared to have an immediate ripple effect, with Denmark announcing plans to temporarily instate new controls at the country’s border with later in the day.

Security staff check IDs at Kastrups train station outside Copenhagen, Denmark, Monday, Jan.  2015.  Sweden requires train companies with service across a bridge-and-tunnel link from Denmark to refuse passengers without IDs. (Bjorn Lindgren / TT News Agency via AP) SWEDEN OUT

Security staff check IDs at Kastrups train station outside Copenhagen, Denmark, Monday, Jan. 2015. Sweden requires train companies with service across a bridge-and-tunnel link from Denmark to refuse passengers without IDs. (Bjorn Lindgren / TT News Agency via AP) SWEDEN OUT

Danish Prime Minister Lars Lokke Rasmussen said at a news conference Monday that the border controls will initially last for ten days.

Sweden’s decision is the latest move by a country to suspend an agreement to keep internal borders open as part of the union’s Schengen agreement that allows for visa free travel between the nations.

Danish officials have suggested Sweden should pay for the cost of the ID checks. Denmark has faced its own criticism from the international community after leaders proposed measures to seize valuables from refugees applying for asylum in the country.

A temporary fence is erected between domestic and international tracks at Hyllie train station in southern Malmo, Sweden

The Swedish government decided to tighten border controls after 160,000 people applied for asylum in Sweden last year — the highest number in Europe except for Germany. Most of them were from Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan.

In total, more than 1 million refugees and migrants made their way into Europe in 2015. It is the largest refugee crisis on the continent since World War II, driven in large part by the ongoing Syrian civil war.

The response to the crisis from European nations has been varied. Germany has welcomed most refugees applying for asylum in the country.

Meanwhile some eastern European nations that have become a main transit point for refugees, like Hungary and Slovenia, have erected fences and tightened border restrictions.

Additional information from the Associated Press.

IMAGES:

The sun sets over the Oresund Bridge between Sweden and Denmark, seen from Lernacken, Sweden, on Sunday Jan. 3, 2016. IMAGE: ERLAND VINBERG /TT /ASSOCIATED PRESS

Security staff check IDs at Kastrups train station outside Copenhagen, Denmark, Monday, Jan. 2015.IMAGE: (BJORN LINDGREN / TT NEWS AGENCY/ASSOCIATED PRESS

For more on this story go to: http://mashable.com/2016/01/04/sweden-denmark-border/?utm_campaign=Feed%3A+Mashable+%28Mashable%29&utm_cid=Mash-Prod-RSS-Feedburner-All-Partial&utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_content=Google+Feedfetcher#UOy66OGfNiqu

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