Saturday

26th May 2018

Nine EU states to increase train security

  • Germany: 'We don’t want complete, comprehensive checks on people or luggage ... in Germany or Europe' (Photo: Arjan Eising)

Nine Western European countries decided Saturday (29 August) to increase ad-hoc checks of train passengers' identities and luggage.

But the experience of travelling by train in Europe is to remain largely unchanged.

Dear EUobserver reader

Subscribe now for unrestricted access to EUobserver.

Sign up for 30 days' free trial, no obligation. Full subscription only 15 € / month or 150 € / year.

  1. Unlimited access on desktop and mobile
  2. All premium articles, analysis, commentary and investigations
  3. EUobserver archives

EUobserver is the only independent news media covering EU affairs in Brussels and all 28 member states.

♡ We value your support.

If you already have an account click here to login.

“We can’t do and don’t want complete, comprehensive checks on people or luggage in trains in Germany or Europe", Germany's interior minister Thomas de Maiziere said, according to Associated Press.

De Maiziere and several transport and security ministers met in Paris eight days after the failed attack on a Thalys train from Amsterdam to Paris.

Representatives from Belgium, France, Germany, Luxembourg, Spain, Italy, the Netherlands, Switzerland, and the UK, as well as the European Commission, attended the meeting.

They decided identity checks of passengers, as well as luggage checks on stations and trains will increase “where it is necessary”, according to a statement released by French interior minister Bernard Cazeneuve.

The statement did not specify what constitutes "necessary".

“Mixed patrols, made up of law enforcement personnel from several countries, already exist in many countries. We will further reinforce these teams and deploy them more extensively,” the statement said.

The officials also decided to assess what the consequences would be of making it obligatory for international train tickets to be registered using the name of the passenger.

However, despite calls for increased security after a Moroccan gunman boarded an international train carrying an automatic rifle and a handgun, there is reluctance to make train security checks match those of air travel.

“The security and safety of passengers is our first priority. But of course we must not overreact”, EU transport commissioner Violeta Bulc said in a press release.

“It is essential that, as far as possible, public transport remains open and easily accessible. Security must be proportionate to the threat".

EU transport ministers will discuss train safety again when they meet in October.

Train scare prompts talks on EU security

The European Commission won't rule out proposing new legislation after transport ministers in October meet to discuss security after a gunman boarded a Thalys trained armed with an assault rifle.

GDPR - a global 'gold standard'?

The new EU privacy rules are touted as a global 'gold standard' - but Mexico's former data commissioner warns some nations are far from ready.

New GDPR enforcer says complaints imminent

The European Data Protection Board is a new EU body tasked with enforcing the EU's privacy laws with powers to impose massive fines. Its head Andrea Jelinek told reporters complaints against companies are expected to be immediate.

Opinion

The dangers of resurgent nationalism in Greece

Virulent nationalism in Greece has been stirred up in the context of austerity and renewed negotiations with Macedonia. Recent attempts by the government to address the inequalities suffered by LGBT persons have also been met with a reactionary backlash.

News in Brief

  1. Italy set to pick eurosceptic finance minister
  2. UK foreign minister fooled by Russian pranksters
  3. Rajoy ally gets 33 years in jail for corruption
  4. Close race as polls open in Irish abortion referendum
  5. Gazprom accepts EU conditions on gas supplies
  6. Facebook tells MEPs: non-users are not profiled
  7. Commission proposes ending France deficit procedure
  8. UK households hit with Brexit income loss

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. Counter BalanceEuropean Ombudsman requests more lending transparency from European Investment Bank
  2. Nordic Council of MinistersOECD Report: Gender Equality Boosts GDP Growth in Nordic Region
  3. Centre Maurits Coppieters“Peace and reconciliation is a process that takes decades” Dr. Anthony Soares on #Brexit and Northern Ireland
  4. Mission of China to the EUMEPs Positive on China’s New Measures of Opening Up
  5. Macedonian Human Rights MovementOld White Men are Destroying Macedonia by Romanticizing Greece
  6. Counter BalanceControversial EIB-Backed Project Under Fire at European Parliament
  7. Nordic Council of MinistersIncome Inequality Increasing in Nordic Countries
  8. European Jewish CongressEU Leaders to Cease Contact with Mahmoud Abbas Until He Apologizes for Antisemitic Comments
  9. International Partnership for Human RightsAnnual Report celebrates organization’s tenth anniversary
  10. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic Cooperation Needed on Green Exports and Funding
  11. Mission of China to the EUPremier Li Confirms China Will Continue to Open Up
  12. European Jewish CongressCalls on Brussels University to Revoke Decision to Honour Ken Loach