• Sweden's news in English
 
app_header_v3
Border checks
Sweden checks change refugee flow around EU
The Swedish Coast Guard patrolling the waters off southern Sweden. Photo: Johan Nilsson / TT

Sweden checks change refugee flow around EU

AFP/The Local · 12 Jan 2016, 07:30

Published: 12 Jan 2016 07:30 GMT+01:00

Germany is turning back a growing number of migrants at its border with Austria, Austrian authorities said Monday, in an apparent reaction to Sweden and Denmark tightening frontier controls.

"The daily number of migrants being turned back has risen from 60 in December to 200 since the start of the year," David Furtner, police spokesman in Upper Austria state, told the AFP news agency.

Last week, Sweden, a favoured destination for many of the migrants, sought to stem the flow by imposing controls on travellers from Denmark.

Denmark in turn introduced spot checks on arrivals from Germany, explaining that its actions were a direct response to the new approach being followed by its Nordic neighbour.

Further said those being sent back from Germany were migrants -- mostly Afghans as well as Moroccans and Algerians -- who did not want to apply for asylum in Germany but in other countries, notably Scandinavia.

READ ALSO: Why do refugees prefer Sweden to Denmark?

Austria is a major transit country for the hundreds of thousands of migrants and refugees seeking to enter the European Union, mostly via Upper Austria state at a rate currently of 1,000-2,000 per day.

Austria meanwhile has moved to tighten controls on its border with Slovenia, with Carinthia, one of two Austrian states bordering Slovenia, turning back 1,652 since January 1st, according to police.

Austrian Chancellor Werner Faymann said Monday that Vienna was looking into the legality of turning away "economic migrants" -- as opposed to bona fide refugees -- at its borders.

"What is certain is that soon we are going to become more active at our borders," Faymann said in an interview with the Kronen-Zeitung daily to be published on Tuesday.

Story continues below…

Police spokesman Furtner said that almost all those turned back by Germany simply try again to enter the country, with most succeeding via other routes.

Refugee support groups in Sweden have expressed fears of human trafficking and dangerous clandestine crossings across the Baltic as a result of Sweden's ID checks, while on Monday it was reported that five asylum seekers stopped while apparently attempting to cross the Öresund bridge on foot may have been trying to avoid the new controls.

Sweden introduced its checks after running out of accommodation for asylum seekrs, having recently taken in more per capita than any other EU nation. Meanwhile, Denmark has a track record for adopting some of the toughest immigration policies in Europe.

Almost 163,000 refugees sought asylum in Sweden in 2015, according to the country's migration agency, compared to Denmark's 18,000.

For more news from Sweden, join us on Facebook and Twitter.

AFP/The Local (news@thelocal.se)

Today's headlines
Ibrahimovic makes United debut in front of Swedes
Ibrahimovic endured a terrible Euro 2016. Photo: TT

”Everybody has been waiting for this,” says Mr Modesty.

Sweden to investigate citizens' sex lives
It has been 20 years since the last in-depth study of the sex habits of Swedes. Photo: Tammy McGary/Flickr

The Swedish government is to launch a major study of the sex lives of its citizens after reports that lovemaking is on the wane.

Russian 'terror suspect' held at Swedish airport walks free
File photo of Arlanda Airport. Photo: Johan Nilsson/TT

UPDATED: A 35-year-old man has been released from police custody after being arrested at Arlanda Airport in Stockholm on Friday morning.

Northern Dispatches
'Moving to northern Sweden was the best thing we've done'
Photo: FB

In his farewell column, The Local’s northern Sweden correspondent, Paul Connolly, looks back at his first four years in Sweden.

Bear family just hanging out on Swedish golf course
Not the bear cub in question. But isn't he cute? Photo: AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko

A bear family has been roaming a Swedish golf course, and the best thing of all is that no one cares.

The Local investigates
What do we actually know about the violence in Malmö?
Police investigating an explosion in Malmö on Thursday. Photo: Johan Nilsson/TT

International media have presented a "distorted" view of a spate of Malmö shootings and an explosion, a senior police boss has told The Local.

The Local List
Reasons why Stockholm Pride is simply awesome
Photo: Annika af Klercker/TT.

Stockholm's Pride festival culminates on Saturday with a parade – and more than a few parties. Here's why we think it's pretty amazing.

Cashless Swedes sitting on old bills worth billions

Old Swedish bank notes worth 1.4 billion kronor are still circulating, according to the country’s central bank, despite them having been declared invalid a month ago.

Homes
In pictures: Why is Nordic design so hot right now?
Scandinavian design. Photo: House of Beatniks

Design agency Studio Esinam investigates together with Houzz.se why the world is falling in love with Nordic style.

Stockholm one of world's best places to live: magazine
Living the dream. Photo: Hasse Holmberg/TT

Stockholm is the tenth best city in the world to live in, reckons this British magazine.

Sponsored Article
Why Swiss hospitality graduates are in demand
National
Swedish cop makes arrest of the year
Sponsored Article
Five easy ways to travel more often
National
Anyone for a bite of 340-year-old shipwrecked stinky cheese?
Gallery
People-watching: July 27th
Blog updates

26 July

A summer of change; a summer of beauty (The Diplomatic Dispatch) »

"You would have had to try hard to miss the political upheavals in the UK after…" READ »

 

22 July

After the horror, carry on regardless (Globally Local) »

"This time last week, we were just digesting the horror of the Nice killings, in which…" READ »

 
 
 
Sponsored Article
Why you need a EuroBonus American Express Card
Politics
Why Sweden's high taxes are not as high as you think
Sponsored Article
What can newcomers learn about Sweden at Almedalen?
National
What's haggis in a condom doing on Swedish children's TV?
National
Meet the northern Swede who is the world's best mosquito killer
National
Sweden's Hollywood star Alicia Vikander puts her pen in the bottle
Sponsored Article
Gran Canaria: Where Swedes go to work (and play)
Gallery
People-watching: July 22nd-24th
Sponsored Article
Why you should attend an international job fair
The Local Voices
The Jewish Syrian who dreams of rebuilding his country
National
Watch this Swedish weather host leave his fly open... on live TV
Sponsored Article
Why expats choose international health insurance
The Local Voices
'I fled war in Syria. I never expected to be beaten in Sweden'
Sponsored Article
'Sweden's Lauryn Hill' touches the country's musical soul
National
WATCH: Asylum seeker brutally beaten by Swedish bus driver
Technology
Why everyone is talking about Sweden's GTA pride parade
Sponsored Article
Five things Americans should know about voting abroad
National
EU hits truck cartel with record price fixing fine
Sponsored Article
Local guide: the best of Berlin
Society
OPINION: Why Sweden is the most extreme country in the world
The Local Voices
'There is equality in accommodation in Sweden: Everyone is suffering'
Gallery
Property of the week: Gräsö, Östhammar
Gallery
People-watching: July 15th-17th
National
How to make sure you're not caught out by Sweden's old bank notes
Business & Money
Why Sweden has been named the most innovative country in Europe
National
Terror attack: what should you do?
National
French expat on the moment he was assaulted by a Stockholm bouncer
Technology
Gunman? Nah, smartphone Swede
The Local Voices
'If the war in Syria ended today, would you go back?'
The Local Voices
‘I feel like I’m living in a grave!’
Gallery
IN PICTURES: Sweden's Princess Victoria celebrates 39th birthday
Gallery
People-watching: July 13th
National
Swedes discover surprise mountain
The Local Voices
'Even xenophobic Swedes can be polite’
The Local Voices
'The best time to be smuggled to Europe is August 20th, 2015'
The Local Voices
Swedes: Stop obsessing over your material life and start talking to strangers
3,390
jobs available