Belgium approves strengthening of Schengen Information System
On Thursday, the Belgian Chamber of Representatives gave the go-ahead for the strengthening of the Schengen Information System, which keeps information on third-country nationals entering the EU in a database.
The Schengen Information System or SIS has existed for some time but was initially used to control the Schengen zone's external borders. Through the database, European countries shared information, like wanted persons, persons banned from entering the Schengen zone or missing persons.
In 2018, the EU decided that member states are also required to enter the data of non-EU citizens who are already on their territory. These include third-country nationals holding visas for short stays of up to 90 days.
As a result, EU countries will now know exactly who left the country, when, and whether those persons had previously resided in another Schengen country.
The Bulgarian border. © Nikolay DOYCHINOV / AFP