Will Europe cancel Schengen?
The Ministers of Interior and Justice of the EU member states met today in Amsterdam where they tried to determine the method in the framework of informal discussions that will help to limit the flow of migrants to the EU passing through the territory of Turkey and Greece. The ministers had a choice: either a guaranteed way of protecting the EU borders from illegal immigration, or the introduction of border controls within the EU, i.e. the total or partial disintegration of the Schengen zone.
According to the Austrian Interior Minister, Johanna Mickle-Leitner, if it "does not protect the European borders, i.e. the Greek-Turkish border, then the border of the Schengen area will be moved to central Europe.''
The head of the European Council, Donald Tusk pointed out that the Schengen area may cease its existence in two months, as the visa-free regime between the EU countries may be cancelled if the authorities fail to resolve the issue of migrants. He also noted that the EU "will collapse as a political project" if doesn't ensure the safety of its external borders.
The Chairman of the European Commission (EC), Jean-Claude Juncker, believes that the disappearance of the Schengen zone would threaten the existence of the European Union.
The editor-in-chief of the journal Russia in Global Affairs, Fyodor Lukyanov, said that under the current conditions "the disintegration, or the abolition of Schengen (the return of checks at internal borders) is almost inevitable."
"This is not a complete rejection of the idea, and nothing will change for us, not residents of the European Union, because it is not necessary to reject the introduction of visas. The greatest convenience for foreign visitors after the introduction of Schengen was that you could receive it once."
According to him, the return of full control at the external borders of the European Union is hardly likely, as "it is unclear how to do it."
"How to ensure a tight defense from the outside, considering that there are problems in relations with neighboring countries? Well, first of all, there is Turkey, as the greatest flow of migrants passes through it. It will be difficult to build a fortress, a fence at the perimeter, I think it won't work. Accordingly, the Schengen zone will be changed, or it will be reduced," the expert said. According to the director of the Institute of Strategic Planning and Forecasting, Professor Aleksander Gusev, firstly what the Schengen zone is now needs to be determined.
"There was the Schengen Agreement, which has gone down as history. There is the Schengen acquis of the EU. I remind you that 22 European countries are in the Schengen zone, or in the Schengen acquis. In fact, the majority of the EU countries are in the Schengen acquis.''