EU ministers discuss new Schengen regulations

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European Union (EU) Interior Ministers will on Friday discuss for the first time a proposal to create a new system authorising foreigners to enter the Schengen zone, as well as anti-terrorist measures and the recording of air passenger data.

The meeting will allow them to exchange their first impressions on the so-called European Travel Information and Authorisation System (ETIAS) presented on Wednesday by the European Commission, Efe news reported.

The system aims to strengthen security and EU immigration controls by formalising travel authorisations for non-Schengen country nationals who wish to enter the area and do not need visas, requiring them instead to pay a five euros ($5.30) fee.

The mechanism is similar to the so-called ESTA used in the United States and will carry out background checks in advance to deny entry to travellers if it is considered necessary.

This measure was proposed by the EC following terrorist attacks in Europe last year and in the wake of the migration crisis.

It will facilitate the exchange of information in data banks.

EU member states will have until May 25, 2018 to incorporate the legislation into their domestic regulations.

(IANS)

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