Austrian Chancellor calls for stronger borders with Germany

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DW: Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz has warned that Germany’s new migration deal could force the Alpine country to impose stronger border checks on Italy and Slovenia. The deal ended a bitter German government crisis.

Austria’s conservative chancellor on Tuesday said that Germany’s debate over how to tackle irregular migration underlined the importance of strengthening the European Union’s external border.

“Securing the external border is the basis for securing internal mobility [in the EU],” Sebastian Kurz said in a speech to the European Parliament. Austria, he added, would work towards that goal as part of its six-month EU presidency, which began on Sunday.

Earlier, Kurz said that a migration deal that ended a bitter dispute between German Chancellor Angela Merkel and her interior minister, Horst Seehofer, would force Austria to “protect” its southern border.

“Should this agreement become the German government’s position, we see that as prompting us to take action to prevent negative consequences for Austria and its population,” he said in a joint statement with his far-right vice chancellor, Heinz-Christian Strache, and interior minister, Herbert Kickl.


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