May 2, 2017 / 3:01 PM / in 2 years

Sweden ends ID checks on Denmark travelers imposed as migration peaked

A police officer keeps guard as migrants arrive at Hyllie station outside Malmo, Sweden. Picture taken November 19, 2015. REUTERS/Johan Nilsson/TT NEWS AGENCY

STOCKHOLM (Reuters) - Sweden is to lift identity checks on people entering the country from Denmark imposed at the height of the migration crisis, it said on Tuesday.

Sweden introduced border controls after more than 160,000 people sought asylum in 2015. That required an exemption from the EU’s free-movement rules which is due to expire on May 11.

Lifting the ID checks will end delays suffered by thousands of cross-border commuters, but the government says it will not lead to a return to the huge influx of asylum seekers whose number dropped to less than 30,000 in 2016.

“We will not return to the levels we had then (2015),” Home Affairs Minister Anders Ygeman told reporters.

“We want to have the maximum possible control over those who come to Sweden.”

While ID checks on trains, buses and some ferries from Denmark will end, there will be tougher checks on arrival at the Swedish border, including increased camera surveillance, vehicle x-rays and number plate checks, the government said.

People arriving in Sweden will have to show they have the right to enter the country, not just present ID.

Reporting by Stockholm Newsroom

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