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EU Court: Schengen Members Have the Right to Extend Border Controls for More Than Only Six Months

The Attorney General of the Court of Justice, Henrik Saugmandsgaard, confirmed that all EU member states facing serious threats to public policy or internal security would be eligible to re-impose and even extend their border controls for a period of more than six months.

Although this declaration was confirmed by the Court of Justice of the European Union, member states are only allowed to extend the border controls period under strict conditions, reports.

According to a press release published by the Court of Justice of the European Union, if EU member states are obligated to lift tight controls at their borders when the six-month period expires, the same will be prevented from assuming the responsibilities based on it.

In this regard, Saugmandsgaard said it was inconceivable that the European legislator had intended to achieve such a result and ruled out the possibility of re-applying the exemption in the event of a “renewed threat”.

The Advocate General explained that the Schengen border law also tries to preserve public policy and combat serious threats to public policy, stressing that as such, the responsibilities of EU member states in this area cannot be framed with specific periods.

Although Saugmandsgaard believes that Schengen border law should allow for the re-imposition of border controls in the event of a “renewed threat”, he considers that “when the serious threat in question is essentially similar to the previous serious threat, the requirement of proportionality implies a great deal of importance limitations in this respect, in that it sets strict conditions for re-application purposes.”

All EU member states that need to reimpose border controls must explain why they need to make such a decision by evaluating the degree of effectiveness of the initial action to reimpose border controls.

They will then be obligated to explain why such preventive measures are necessary by explaining why other recreational measures are not sufficient to deal with such a situation.

“Furthermore, in the event that the application is re-applied several times in a row, as in the present case, the requirement of enhanced proportionality becomes more stringent each time it is re-applied,” reads the statement published by the Court of Justice of the European Union.

In this regard, Saugmandsgaard stressed to those countries that the committee which must be notified of these preventive measures before their adoption must examine each time whether the condition is fulfilled.

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