As Europe’s refugee crisis deepens, more border fences are being built and frontier controls are being re-instated. Even Germany has begun to roll back the welcome mat.
Best known for its open-door policies, Sweden reintroduced temporary border controls on Thursday in response to a record influx of asylum seekers.
The announcement came as Slovenia began construction on a border fence, similar to the one Hungary has already built along its frontier with Serbia and Croatia.
Policy experts say while EU member states still disagree on the need for fences or reintroducing internal border controls, they all now agree the bloc’s external borders do need strengthening.
There are even fears the Schengen passport-free agreement, which allows the free movement of people and goods across most of the bloc, could unravel.
Sweden, Denmark and Norway are also now pushing through tougher refugee legislation, including cuts to benefits for Asylum seekers.
And even Germany, which earlier suspended the bloc’s rules stating asylum seekers must apply for refuge in the first country of arrival, say they’ve changed their mind even though it means the majority will now be stranded in cash-strapped Greece.
So Europe is getting tougher, but it doesn’t mean the welcome mat has been rolled up altogether. Thousands of ordinary Europeans, and organizations and clubs like this German football team, are helping to provide shelter and food to those who have already arrived even as more obstacles are erected for those who have not already made the journey.
CCTV’s Jack Barton reports from Brussels.