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Merkel Calls for EU's Schengen System to Be Fully Restored

© AP Photo / Markus SchreiberGerman Chancellor Angela Merkel arrives at a board meeting of her ruling Christian Democratic Union party, CDU, at the party's headquarters in Berlin, Monday, Feb. 15, 2016.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel arrives at a board meeting of her ruling Christian Democratic Union party, CDU, at the party's headquarters in Berlin, Monday, Feb. 15, 2016. - Sputnik International
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The European Union's borderless Schengen system must be returned to normal, German Chancellor Angela Merkel said Tuesday.

BERLIN (Sputnik) — The issue will be discussed at the EU summit on March 7, Merkel added.

"Germany supports the decision taken at the last European Council on February 18 on the resumption of the [normal] functioning of Schengen and the completion of policy constraints. Refugees don't have the right to choose the country in which they want to be granted asylum," Merkel told reporters.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel reacts as she addresses a news conference after a meeting with state premiers at the Chancellery in Berlin, Germany, January 28, 2016 - Sputnik International
'Damn Duty': Merkel Admits Migrant Crisis Makes Her Feel 'Desperate'
The very existence of the Schengen Area has been put into question by the difficulties Europe has faced in managing a massive refugee crisis, with hundreds of thousands of undocumented migrants fleeing their home countries to escape violence and poverty. EU border agency Frontex recorded some 1.8 million illegal border crossings into the European Union in 2015.

In response to the growing number of migrants reaching their territories, some European states, such as Hungary, Bulgaria and Slovenia, have built fences, while other states, including Austria and Germany, have toughened their migration policies and reinstated border controls.

In January, European Council President Donald Tusk stated that the Schengen area, which protects the free movement of people and goods throughout the European Union, may face collapse if Europe fails to control the migrant crisis.

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