Border fences Can barbed wire stop refugees?
They exist: border fences in Europe. Some German politicians see it as a solution for Germany to stem the flow of refugees. However, the Chancellor sees it differently.
Recently, the German Police Union had called for the construction of a fence on the border to Austria. Its union leader, Rainer Wendt, coupled with this the hope of a chain reaction. "If we close our borders in this way, Austria will also close its border with Slovenia. That's exactly the effect we need here," he said at the weekend to the German newspaper "Welt am Sonntag".
But, even within the police force there are others who see things differently. Criticism came immediately from colleagues within the Police Union and the Federation of German Detectives (BDK). It is "unhelpful when police union representatives under the cover of putting it straight act as intellectual fire raisers and `at last say what the lying press is keeping quiet about´" wrote André Schulz, BDK leader in a commentary in the German "Welt".
The refugee policy of the federal government continues to divide the ruling government party, the CDU: Christian von Stetten a member of the Bundestag for the CDU, told the German newspaper Bild that re-examining border fortifications should no longer be taboo.
Merkel sticks to her "No"
Border fences are not an issue for the Chancellor. She remains convinced "that you cannot seal off a country like Germany, not even a fence could stop desperate people". The chair of the CDA (Christian Democratic Employees' Association), Karl-Josef Laumann (CDU) and the Bavarian Interior Minister Joachim Herrmann (CSU) have also both spoken out against border fences.
"The Great Chinese Wall was just as ineffective as the wall that Erich Honecker und Walter Ulbrich built in the middle of Germany. We can roll out as much rolled barbed wire …(as we want)... it will not be a sufficient answer to this challenge. "(Peter Altmaier Head of the Federal Chancellery and refugee coordinator (CDU)
Border fences in Europe
The first border fences to counter refugees were established by Spain. In the enclaves Ceuta and Melilla, the EU territory to the west of Morocco on the Mediterranean coast of the North African mainland. The border fences had been already erected in the mid-1990s and since then have been continually expanded.
Greece built at the end of 2012 an around 12 km long fence on its land border to Turkey, in the north-east of the country. Bulgaria soon followed with barbed wire at its border to Turkey and this summer Hungary has tried to shield its borders with a meter-high fence. - built on its borders with Serbia and Croatia.