Germany will extend border controls imposed as a result of terrorist attacks across Europe by another six months, Interior Minister Thomas de Maiziere said on Thursday.
His ministry said that the border controls would affect Germany’s border with Austria, which has been the main route for asylum seekers entering Germany, as well as flights from Greece to Germany.
“There continue to be shortcomings in the protection of the EU’s external borders, as well as a significant amount of illegal migration within the Schengen zone.
“A complete return to a Schengen zone without border checks will only be possible once the overall situation allows it,’’ de Maiziere said in a statement.
Part of the EU’s response to the refugee crisis was to allow member states to impose border checks within the passport-free area.
Germany took in some 890,000 migrants in 2015, but the number of new arrivals has fallen drastically since the closure of the Western Balkan route.
Germany’s restrictions were due to expire on Nov. 11, and will now last until May 11, 2018.
Berlin has argued that it needs the checks to combat Islamist extremism within the EU.