UPDATED: Plans for tougher ID checks on the Öresund Bridge between Sweden and Denmark to stem the influx of refugees are set to come into force on January 4th, the government has said.

Sweden’s centre-left government first announced last week that it wanted to introduce regular ID checks on buses, trains and ferries to cope with record numbers of people travelling to the region to claim asylum. On Wednesday it confirmed that they would be introduced during the first week of 2016.

“The coming spring cannot be like this autumn. We have to reduce the number of asylum seekers. These ID checks are one way of achieving that,” said Morgan Johansson at a press conference on Wednesday.

The plans have been criticized by public transport operators warning of travel chaos in the busy commuter region as well as Sweden’s Council on Legislation (Lagrådet), which advises on the legality of government bills and likened the proposed rules to “state of emergency laws”.

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