Romanian Minister of the Interior and Administration Mircea Dusa s after his participation in the meeting of the Justice and Home Affairs (JHA) Council in Luxembourg that he demanded, together with his Bulgarian counterpart, that a decision should be made regarding Romania and Bulgaria accession to the Schengen Area during the JHA Council in December or that a date should be set for the adoption of this decision.
The Romanian Interior minister said that the notification presented during the JHA Council on the current stage of implementation of the Schengen acquis in the two member states is vital „because it brings to the attention of the JHA Council the wish of the 22 million Romanian people to become members of the Schengen Area.” He added that he appreciates the fact that the Cypriot presidency insisted that this should be included on the agenda, as well as the speech of European Commissioner for Home Affairs Cecilia Malmstrom.
„The Bulgarian colleague and I insisted that a decision on this matter should be made this year, considering that all the technicalities have been met by Romania and Bulgaria and that the accession to the Schengen Area cannot be depend on personal criteria, but only on the technical conditions Romania and Bulgaria met and, moreover, even managed some extra requirements. That is why there is no obstacle for Romania and Bulgaria to join the Schengen Area. No personal or political criteria can be taken into account in this decision,” said Mircea Dusa.
He announced that he will use the upcoming period, when Romania is in election campaign, to meet several ministers of Home Affairs, the German and Italian included, but said that there is no relation between his contacts and the position of these states regarding Romania’s accession to the Schengen Area.
„After today’s informal talks at the JHA Council, I believe all the Interior ministers in the EU are aware that [the process of joining the Schengen Area] must be concluded that a decision must be made,” said Dusa, adding that the Cypriot presidency of the EU Council and European Commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom announced „the necessary measures are taken so that the final decision should be reached in a reasonably short time.”