Schengen Information System: the upcoming accession of Cyprus
By Angelina Alyabyeva,
Trainee Lawyer, AML CYSEC Officer, LLB (HONS)
The Schengen Information System is a governmental European database established by European Commission, which operates as from 2018 after the legislative updates in accordance with Regulations (EU) 2018/1861, 2018/1860 and 2018/1862. Specifically, by replacing the old legislation, the three Regulations govern the following:
Regulation (EU) 2018/1860 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 28 November 2018 on the implication and usage of the Schengen Information System for the return of illegally staying third-country nationals,
Regulation (EU) 2018/1861 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 28 November 2018 on the establishment, operation and use of the Schengen Information System (SIS) in the field of border checks, and amending the Convention implementing the Schengen Agreement, and amending and repealing Regulation (EC) No 1987/2006,
Regulation (EU) 2018/1861 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 28 November 2018 on the establishment, operation and use of the Schengen Information System (SIS) in the field of police cooperation and judicial cooperation in criminal matters, amending and repealing Council Decision 2007/533/JHA, and repealing Regulation (EC) No 1986/2006 of the European Parliament and of the Council and Commission Decision 2010/261/EU.
Due to the absence of internal borders between Schengen countries, such information sharing system is compensating for border controls, immigration, police, customs, judicial authorities across the European Union. In simple terms, the system is used by European countries to find information about individuals and legal entities for the purposes of national security and border control. To supplement, the system also contains the information concerning the property or documents, which have been reported lost, stolen or used in crime alongside with the data on wanted or missing persons who are not permitted to enter or reside in Schengen area.
As it was announced recently, Cyprus will join officially the Schengen Information System on 25 July 2023. This will mean that the local and European authorities will be able to identify promptly and better to identify and prevent risks to the security of Cypriot citizens and improve the exchange of information with other Member States.
Additionally, if, for instance, there will be a wanted person in one Member State, Cyprus without being involved in time – consuming procedures will be able to identify the person and cooperate in a better and timely manner with authorities of Member States. However, it is important to note that the accession to SIS is not equal to the accession of Cyprus to Schengen zone and does not lead to the removal of passport control borders between the countries.