November 11, 2016 / 9:56 AM / 2 years ago

Sweden says extends temporary border controls

Sweden's Interior Minister Anders Ygeman speaks in Stockholm November 11, 2015. REUTERS/Henrik Montgomery/TT News Agency

STOCKHOLM (Reuters) - The Swedish government has decided to extend temporary border controls for another three months, citing security concerns, the interior minister said on Friday.

Sweden made an abrupt U-turn last year on decades of generous immigration policies, introducing border controls and tough asylum rules after 163,000 people applied for asylum in 2015.

“The threats to our internal security at the time we took the initial decision still remain,” Anders Ygeman told Swedish Radio.

An extension of border controls beyond the current mid-November expiry required approval from the European Commission, the EU’s executive arm. Sweden’s temporary border controls were due to end on November 12.

Brussels said in September the emergency border checks are still justified.

Germany, Denmark, Norway and Austria are the other countries within Europe’s Schengen zone of free travel that put the exceptional measures in place after last year’s influx of refugees and migrants.

Reporting by Johan Ahlander; Editing by Alistair Scrutton

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