Saturday 10 December 2016

Closing the borders is not the answer, but we have a right to know who's entering EU

Published 17/11/2015 | 02:30

Refugees arrive on the Greek island of Lesbos last month, after crossing the Aegean Sea from Turkey. The majority of those coming to the EU from Syria are fleeing Isil, but a tiny minority may have other motives. Photo: AFP
Refugees arrive on the Greek island of Lesbos last month, after crossing the Aegean Sea from Turkey. The majority of those coming to the EU from Syria are fleeing Isil, but a tiny minority may have other motives. Photo: AFP

'Paris changes everything".

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The comment attributed to an ally of German Chancellor Angela Merkel over the weekend demonstrates the inevitable impact the Isil attacks will have on Europe's approach to refugees from Syria and other countries.

The revelation that a passport of a Syrian refugee was found close to the dead body of one of the suicide bombers inevitably rang alarm bells. Germany, and Ms Merkel in particular, was a passionate advocate of a de facto open-door policy and were lauded internationally for doing so. But within hours of the atrocities in the French capital, one senior Bavarian minister was quoted as saying: "the days of uncontrolled immigration and illegal entry can't continue just like that."

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