PARIS — France
will reinstate border controls for a month around the coming climate change conference in Paris, the interior minister announced on Friday.
The interior minister, Bernard Cazeneuve, told the BFM TV news channel that checks at the French border
would be reinstated around the time of the climate conference, which is sponsored by the United Nations and will run from Nov. 30 to Dec. 11. Over 40,000 participants and about 80 heads of government, including President Obama, are expected to attend.
Mr. Cazeneuve cited security concerns, saying that there was “a context of terrorist threats or of risks of disturbances to public order that could come and sully this large international gathering, which is carrying a great message for humanity.”
France is part of the Schengen area, the 26-nation European bloc in which citizens may travel across borders without stopping to show a passport or visa.
The Schengen agreement allows the temporary reinstatement of controls at internal borders when there are security concerns, including for occasions like international gatherings or sporting events.
France last reinstated border controls in 2011, during a summit meeting of Group of 20 nations in Cannes
. Other European hosts of United Nations climate conferences have reinstated checks at their borders during the talks, including Denmark
in 2009 and Poland
Prime Minister Manuel Valls said in September that France would not hesitate to temporarily reinstate controls to stem the flow of refugees fleeing the Middle East for Europe, as countries like Germany and Austria
have done. But Mr. Cazeneuve said that Friday’s announcement was unrelated to the migrant crisis.