Sweden to introduce border controls from Thursday

Stockholm: Sweden will start from Thursday to introduce temporary border controls in the country’s south, said Anders Ygeman, Swedish Minister for Home Affairs on Wednesday.

The minister announced the decision after the overburdened Sweden Migration agency said it could no longer do its job.

According to Ygeman, temporary border controls will be implemented at noon on Thursday and apply initially for 10 days, and can be extended longer for 20 days.

The temporary border checks apply only to people entering Sweden by road, rail or sea in southern Sweden; air passengers are unaffected, he said, adding that passengers’ identity documents would be checked.

Ygeman said that the announcement is due to the fact that Swedish police had judged that the Schengen area trigger points regarding threat to internal order and security have been reached.

He also added that, under such circumstances, refugees coming to Sweden shall either return to the country they came from, or select a different transit route, or seek asylum in Sweden.

Sweden took in the highest number of asylum seekers per capita in the EU during 2014.

The country will see a record number of total applicants this year, with the number of applications received during the first ten months at 112,000.

In late October, the Swedish government struck a deal with several opposition parties to introduce several emergency measures, such as temporary residence permits for some asylum holders and a requirement that all municipalities welcome refugees.