POLITICS

Corlatean – Westerwelle talks on Schengen in Munich

Romanian Foreign Minister Titus Corlatean met his German counterpart Guido Westerwelle on Saturday, presenting during the meeting the arguments in support of a favourable decision on Romania’s Schengen accession bid. The meeting took place on the margins of the Security Conference in Munich. According to a communiqué issued by the Foreign Affairs Ministry, the two ministers saluted the very good stage of bilateral relations, exhibited both by the frequent high-level contacts of recent years and by Germany consolidating its position as Romania’s main trade partner. Minister Titus Corlatean evoked the actions organized at the end of last year in order to mark 20 years of diplomatic relations between the two countries, actions considered a very good indicator of the close relations between the governmental, parliamentarian, economic and cultural environments. Minister Corlatean underlined the fact that Romanian authorities are showing enhanced attention to the consolidation of relations with the German federated states and to the creation of partnerships with central and local German authorities in economic domains of priority, such as: research, innovation, infrastructure, environment protection, agriculture. Issues of common interest on the European agenda were also included on the meeting’s agenda: the Multiannual Financial Framework 2014-2020, the EU’s Eastern neighbourhood policy, the EU Strategy for the Danube Region. “The head of Romanian diplomacy presented a series of arguments in support of a favorable decision on Romania’s Schengen accession and underlined the fact that Romanian authorities are responsively fulfilling the role they have on the EU’s eastern border, as well as all criteria established in the Schengen acquis, a fact that is also confirmed by the European Commission. From this point of view, the head of Romanian diplomacy underlined the legitimate character of a favorable decision on Romania’s Schengen accession on the occasion of the next Justice and Home Affairs Council meeting in March,” the communiqué reads. The two ministers agreed to continue to have, in the upcoming period, bilateral contacts at this level, in Bucharest and in Berlin.

Ambassador Schwarzinger:  Schengen not linked to CVM Austrian

Ambassador Michael Schwarzinger reiterated on Friday, during a meeting with Romanian Internal Affairs Minister Radu Stroe, his support for a favourable decision on Romania’s Schengen accession bid in March 2013, underlining that there is no link between the Schengen file and the Cooperation and Verification Mechanism (CVM) file. Thus, the Austrian Ambassador reiterated his support for a favourable decision for Romania at the next Justice and Home Affairs (JHA) Council (March 7). At the same time, the two officials pointed out the high level of cooperation between the two ministries, and also reviewed the stage of the bilateral partnership in the internal affairs domain. Minister Radu Stroe pointed out the good collaboration instituted at the Salzburg Forum and through the mechanism regulated by the Treaty of Prum, as well as the two states’ police cooperation at international level, a cooperation in which Romanian and Austrian internal affairs attaches and liaison officers are playing an important role. Bogdan Tohaneanu, secretary of state for the Relation with the Parliament and the Government, and Marian Tutilescu, head of the Internal Affairs Ministry’s Schengen, European Affairs and International Relations Directorate, also participated in the meeting.

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