02 MAY 2011
The EU executive is considering allowing member states to reinstate some border controls, its president said on Sunday (1 May), responding to demands for more national power to stem immigration.
The announcement lent momentum to a campaign by France and Italy to reimpose some of the border checks, abolished in 1995 under the Schengen agreement, as they grapple with an influx of migrants fleeing political upheaval in North Africa.
In a letter to Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi and French President Nicolas Sarkozy, José Manuel Barroso, president of the European Commission, said it would be possible to permit countries to reintroduce limited controls.
"The temporary restoration of borders is one of the possibilities, provided this is subject to specific and clearly defined criteria, that could be an element to strengthen the governance of the Schengen agreement," Barroso wrote.
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