Dutch MPs Propose the Suspending of Visa-Free Travel for Albanians in the Schengen Zone

Source: Schengen Visa Info

A group of four Dutch Parliament members has initiated a motion to cancel temporarily visa-free traveling for Albanian nationals in the Schengen Zone.

On April 11th, the Dutch Parliament debated on this motion, securing the support of the majority. Now the Parliament will ask the government of the Netherlands to propose to the European Commission to initiate the “emergency brake” procedure, which enables the suspension of visa-free travel.

The motion was filed by MP Madeleine van Toorenburg of the Christian Democrats, Liberal-Conservative Jeroen van Wijngaarden who was a co-author, Jasper van Dijk from the Socialist Party a co-petitions and fellow Nico Drost from the Christian Union, as a move on fight against organized crime.

The room, after hearing the deliberation,

noting that there has been a substantial increase in criminal activities by the Albanian Mafia in the Netherlands and these criminal organizations are abusing the possibility of traveling through Europe visa-free and thus further expanding their smuggling network;

noting that the suspension of the visa requirement for Albania was subject to various conditions, including the fight against cross-border crime;

calls on the government to submit a request to the European Commission to initiate the emergency braking procedure to temporarily suspend Albania’s visa liberalization and to inform the House of progress,” the note on the decision of the Parliament reads.

Motion submitter and MP Van Toorenburg, said to the plenary that there are 6 times more Albanians in the Netherlands than officially registered.

The Emergency Break is a Schengen Visa suspension mechanism regulated through EC Regulation 1289/2013. It permits the suspension the visa exemption for third country nationals in specific occasions considered as “emergency situations”. The suspension can take place with a simple majority of votes by the European Commission.

In January 2018, France had also threatened to restore the Schengen Visa regime for Albanians after the country received 7,630 asylum applications from Albanians in 2017.

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