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Süddeutsche Zeitung - Germany | Friday, April 20, 2012

Border controls endanger idea of Europe

According to media reports, Germany and France are considering reintroducing short-term border controls should they conclude that the European borders in the south and south-east are inadequately monitored. But such ideas only reinforce anti-European sentiment, warns the left-liberal daily Süddeutsche Zeitung: "What is the good of Europe's freedom of movement if European governments feel free to tamper with it as they please? When member states retreat into their national territories for security reasons as soon as they sense genuine or purportedly precarious situations? With such a move they proclaim that when push comes to shove they prefer the small world of their nation state to Europe. In such a climate it's no wonder that anti-European parties are chalking up success after success with their programmes of retreat into the nation state. And that nationalist, populist and right-wing extremist parties are making headway almost everywhere in Europe. These temporary plans to close off borders are permanent publicity for the enemies of Europe. Anyone who reintroduces border controls only furthers the interests of nationalistic narrow-mindedness."

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