Germany introduced border controls on Sunday after admitting it could no longer cope with a record influx of migrants, tightening the screws ahead of a key EU meeting on spreading the burden of the refugee crisis across the bloc. Within hours of Berlin’s shock announcement, German officers began carrying out the first passport checks near the border with Austria. The border controls effectively suspend Germany’s participation in the bloc’s cherished borderless Schengen system, one of the cornerstones of the European integration project since it was created in the 1990s. “The aim of this measure is to stop the current influx to Germany and to return to an orderly process,” Interior Minister Thomas Maiziere said. Asylum seekers must understand “they cannot choose the states where they are seeking protection,” he told reporters, as Germany also temporarily halted all train traffic to and from Austria. Germany’s actions were welcomed by Hungary’s hardline Prime Minister Viktor Orban, whose own country is building a fence along its border with Serbia to keep migrants out. “We understand that this decision was necessary in order to defend Germany’s and Europe’s values,” he told Bild newspaper. The sudden developments came as tragedy struck again off the coast of Greece, with 34 migrants drowning when their overcrowded wooden boat capsized in high winds.