The Slovenia Times

Italy introducing checks on border with Slovenia

The border between Slovenia and Italy. Photo: Daniel Novakovič/STA

Italy has informed Slovenia of its plan to impose controls on the mutual border because of the changed situation in Europe and the Middle East. Unofficial information has it that Slovenia will in turn introduce checks on its borders with Croatia and Hungary.

The Slovenian Interior Ministry announced on 18 October that Minister Boštjan Poklukar had been notified of the decision by his Italian counterpart Matteo Piantedosi in a telephone conversation the night before.

Piantedosi told Poklukar that the situation had changed drastically since their last meeting in Rome in April. He said the aim of the temporary measure was to prevent terrorism and organised crime.

The pair agreed that the Western Balkans migration route, monitored by Slovenian and Italian authorities, can be an attractive corridor for potential radicalisation.

Stressing the need for border checks to be temporary and proportionate, Poklukar called on Piantedosi to introduce measures that are citizen-friendly, so that "we do not break the cultural, friendship and family ties of people living in the border area".

According to unofficial information obtained by the Slovenian Press Agency (STA), Italy also stressed proportionality in its notice to the European Commission.

The country is to introduce border checks on 21 October, initially for ten days, with the option of extensions.

Italy set out its plan to carry out border checks proportionately and with the least possible impact on the cross-border movement.

Measures are to be tailored to threat assessments and the situation will be monitored and analysed on an ongoing basis with a view to returning as soon as possible to the full functioning of the Schengen regime without internal border controls.

The countries' ministers agreed that Slovenian and Italian police commissioners will talk soon to hash out the details - how and where border checks will be implemented.

Slovenia to follow suit

The ministry said the Slovenian police were intensively monitoring the situation and adapting their measures accordingly in order to ensure the safety of all Slovenian citizens.

Unofficial sources have told the STA that following Italy's announcement, Slovenia is preparing to notify the European Commission of its decision to introduce checks on its borders with Croatia and Hungary. The government is to decide on the measure at its session on 19 October.

Countries across the EU's border-free Schengen Area have been reintroducing border checks due to illegal migration and threats linked to the conflict in the Middle East.

Invoking illegal migration, Austria has been extending temporary checks at its borders with Slovenia and Hungary for several years.

Since the start of the month the country also reintroduced controls at its border with Slovakia and on 18 October at the border with the Czech Republic.

This was after Germany imposed checks on its borders with the Czech Republic, Poland and Switzerland and extended checks on the border with Austria.

Checks on internal Schengen borders are also being carried out by Denmark, France, Norway and Sweden.

The latest developments come as several European countries have raised their security threat levels in response to incidents linked to the Israel-Hamas war.


More from Politics