Czechia reinstates random border checks with Slovakia from Wednesday

Increasing numbers of illegal immigrants traveling from Slovakia and transiting through Czechia have prompted the government to take quick action.

Expats.cz Staff ČTK

Written by Expats.cz StaffČTK Published on 03.10.2023 12:00:00 (updated on 03.10.2023) Reading time: 2 minutes

Prime Minister Petr Fiala announced online this morning that, from Wednesday, Czechia will implement random border controls at its border with Slovakia in response to an increase in the number of migrants from Czechia’s neighboring country.

Stemming illegal immigration

Minister of the Interior Vít Rakušan stated that the checks would be conducted at random points along the entire length of the border. The Czech Republic is coordinating its actions with Poland, which is also enforcing similar measures. The inspections are initially planned until Oct. 13, with the possibility of an extension depending on the prevailing circumstances.

On Sept. 20, Rakušan said that the Czech government was not considering reintroducing checks at the border with Slovakia.

About a year ago, the Czech Republic introduced permanent border controls at the Czech-Slovak border due to an influx of migrants. These controls, put in place at the end of September, were lifted at the beginning of February. Fiala emphasized the growing numbers of illegal migrants entering the EU and stated that the situation was being addressed promptly. He believes that the checks will enhance the safety of Czech citizens.

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"Checks will be conducted randomly along the entire length of the border with Slovakia, aiming to minimize disruption to cross-border traffic without unnecessarily burdening traffic or passengers" 

Czech Interior Minister Vít Rakušan

Remember documents, government says

The new measures will become effective from midnight tonight. The Czech authorities are in contact with their Slovak, Austrian, and German counterparts to ensure cooperation. Just two weeks ago, the German Interior Minister called for heightened controls at the Czech-German border due to an influx of illegal immigrants traveling via Czechia onto the west of Europe.

The Ministry of the Interior emphasized in a press release that random checks would be conducted along the entire border. It emphasized that citizens must possess valid passports or identity cards to cross the border. As anyone can be subject to checks, the ministry recommends that individuals residing near the state border carry their valid documents with them.

The police, with possible cooperation from the customs administration, will oversee the checks. Police officers will primarily focus on road and railway crossings but may also extend checks to pedestrians and cyclists. There are a total of 27 former border crossings between the Czech Republic and Slovakia, comprising 17 road crossings, seven railway crossings, and three river crossings.

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