Question for oral answer to the Commission Rule 115 Carlos Coelho, Simon Busuttil, Frank Engel, Wim van de Camp, Zuzana Roithová, Salvatore Iacolino, on behalf of the PPE Group
Subject: Schengen - illegal controls at internal borders
Freedom of movement is a defining principle of the EU, and the ability to move within the EU without facing checks at internal borders is one of its most successful achievements.
An area without internal border controls which enables the free movement of citizens, workers, goods and services is essential for the success of the single market and for Europe’s continued efforts to boost economic growth.
Unfortunately, the challenges to Schengen continue to grow throughout the EU. Once again, complaints have been made regarding the existence of controls at internal borders. This time, the complaints, accompanied by detailed data, concern the checks that the German authorities are systematically carrying out on Czech buses in border areas. According to the statistics presented in February 2012, around 55.3 % of buses passing through Germany are checked.
Meanwhile, on 11 May 2012 a Dutch Court ruled that the checks carried out since 1 June 2011 by the Dutch authorities under the ‘Mobiel Toezicht Veiligheid’ on the basis of Article 4(17)(a) of the ‘Vreemdelingenbesluit 2000’, have the same effects as border controls and are in clear violation of the Schengen rules, specifically Articles 20 and 21 of the Schengen Borders Code.
Is the Commission aware of these facts? Is the Commission considering pursuing infringement proceedings pursuant to Article 258 of the TFEU against any countries which are in clear violation of the Schengen rules?