POLITICS WORLD

Diaconescu: Germany, a steadfast advocate of our accession to Schengen

The Romanian FM was on a formal visit to Berlin Monday and Tuesday, occasioned by the 20th anniversary of the Treaty for friendly cooperation and European partnership between Romania and Germany.

Having met with German counterpart Guido Westerwelle, the head of Romanian diplomacy, Cristian Diaconescu, said that Germany remains a firm advocate of Romania joining Schengen this year, and also follows with interest the reform of the Romanian legal system. “The German minister of foreign affairs outlined Germany’s support for Romania signing the Schengen Agreement this year. Germany therefore remains an unflinching advocate of accession according to the agreed timetable,” Diaconescu told Mediafax.He added that the “German side maintains the legal system reform and its irreversible modernization process are an additional, positive element of the decisions to be taken by the national parliaments of the member countries of the Schengen Agreement.” “The aspects linked to the operability of the legal system in Romania remain relevant toward a positive decision on our country. Politically speaking, Germany agrees to and will advocate the notion of Romania becoming a member of the Schengen Area this year,” the Romanian FM also said. Diaconescu explained that each of the Schengen member countries sets out to assess candidates on the basis of the criteria in place. “The Netherlands also added those related to the MCV <Mechanism for Cooperation and Verification>. It is not that the German side necessarily wants it but (…) we are trying a decision to be reached by means of bringing these additional arguments together. What is important is for the German side to remain unswerving with respect to  Romania’s accession to Schengen this year,” the Romanian FM stated.Asked by Mediafax whether at stake is total accession, including terrestrial borders, or only the partial one, Diaconescu answered that this aspect is still being debated.The minister also said Germany welcomes the passage by Romania’s Government of the fiscal pact and its “determination to assimilate at decisional level in Romania the important, responsible measures passed by Chancellor Merkel lately”.“The German side considers that the signal Romania sends by ratifying this treaty is a very solid argument for investor trust in Romania, as well as its credibility on European financial markets,” Diaconescu also said. He added that he discussed with his German counterpart aspects related to Romania and EU’s eastern neighbour, with the two foreign ministers hailing the election of a president in the Republic of Moldova. According to Diaconescu, Germany reiterated its support for the European roadmap of the Republic of Moldova. Aspects have also been approached linked to the means for invigorating the Eastern Partnership. The support has been reconfirmed for the enlargement process of the European Union to the Western Balkans.The two officials also exchanged views on the situation in the Middle East and North Africa, with an emphasis on the recent developments in Syria, and agreed on the need for special care being given to assistance for a democratic transition through political and economic support to the countries in the region towards their stabilization, consolidation of the rule of law and development of close relations with the EU, the Romanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MAE) informs.During his visit to Berlin, Minister Diaconescu was scheduled to meet at the Federal Chancellery with Nikolaus Meyer-Landrut, the European affairs adviser to the German chancellor, and with Michael Fluegger, assistant foreign policy adviser. Diaconescu also met with Susanne Kastner, Chairwoman of the Germany-Romania Parliamentary Group and of the Romanian-German Forum. Minister Diaconescu was scheduled to give a speech entitled “Germany and Romania – 20 years of European partnership”, at the Europe House in Germany’s capital.

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