Denmark Steps Up Border Controls With Germany

COPENHAGEN, Denmark (AP) -
Security staff check people's identification at Kastrups train station outside Copenhagen, Denmark January 4, 2016. Border checks on train passengers aimed at curbing the number of asylum seekers entering Sweden from Denmark will cost Denmark's rail operator nearly 1 million Danish crowns ($147,000) a day, the state-owned company said late last month. Travellers have been able to cross borders between the two Nordic countries without passports since the late 1950s. But starting Jan. 4, all Sweden-bound trains will be stopped for mandatory identification checks. REUTERS/Nils Meilvang/Scanpix Denmark ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NOT FOR SALE FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS. THIS PICTURE IS DISTRIBUTED EXACTLY AS RECEIVED BY REUTERS, AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS. DENMARK OUT. NO COMMERCIAL OR EDITORIAL SALES IN DENMARK. NO COMMERCIAL SALES.
Security staff check people’s identification at Kastrups train station outside Copenhagen, Denmark, Monday. (Reuters/Nils Meilvang/Scanpix Denmark)

Denmark has stepped up border controls at its southern frontier with Germany to stem the flow of migrants.

The move, announced Monday by Danish Prime Minister Lars Loekke Rasmussen, comes just hours after Sweden introduced ID checks for all passengers traveling by train from Denmark to Sweden.

Earlier, Sweden introduced new border controls for people entering the country by train, bus or ferry in a bid to stem the flow of migrants.

To comply with the new Swedish rules, on Monday passengers had to show identification to board trains departing from Copenhagen Airport in Denmark to Sweden across a bridge-and-tunnel link.

It is the latest move by a European Union country to suspend an agreement to keep internal borders open.

Danish officials have criticized the move and suggested Sweden should pay for the cost of the ID checks.

The Swedish government decided to tighten border controls after 160,000 people applied for asylum in Sweden last year — the highest number in Europe except for Germany. Most of them were from Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan.