POLITICS

Italian ambassador: Romania should have been in Schengen already



The diplomat considers that our country has successfully fulfilled all Schengen accession requirements.
Italian ambassador Diego Brasioli considers that Romania has successfully fulfilled all the requirements of the Schengen system and that it should already have been a member, pointing out that on July 1, 2014, Italy will take over the EU’s presidency and “will do everything possible in order to reach this important result.”
“Our position is very clear: we believe that Romania has successfully fulfilled all the requirements of the Schengen system, we believe that Romania should already have been a Schengen member for some time now. We hope this will happen very quickly. Italy will take over the EU presidency on July 1, 2014, and we will do everything possible to reach this important result. In Italy we have a large Romanian community, estimated at over one million persons that successfully integrated and are a part of our society. We do not see any problem with Romania’s full Schengen accession,” Brasioli stated, being quoted by Mediafax. The ambassador met Cluj-Napoca Mayor Emil Boc yesterday at the Cluj city hall.
In his turn, Emil Boc thanked the Italian ambassador and Italy for the constant support offered to Romania in the process of European integration and Schengen accession. “Italy is an absolutely fair partner that has appreciated Romania’s efforts. As Prime Minister I was in Italy, the Italian Prime Minister was in Romania and we managed to defuse from a media point of view a problem that was surpassing normal limits and we imposed an institutional collaboration that has proven to be good and efficient,” the mayor stated.
The Italian diplomat attended yesterday the ceremony occasioned by the handing out of the “Marian Papahagi” award at the “Babes-Bolyai” University (UBB), a ceremony organized jointly with the “Vito Grasso” Italian Cultural Institute from Bucharest, the Italian Cultural Center from Cluj and Italy’s Honorary Consulate in Cluj. The “Marian Papahagi” award was introduced in 2008 in the memory of literary critic Marian Papahagi (1948-1999), who was a former UBB rector, secretary of state within the Education Ministry and director of the “Accademia di Romania” in Rome.
Romania’s and Bulgaria’s Schengen accession was included on the agenda of the JHA Council summit scheduled in December, however given the fact that several countries, including the Netherlands, are waiting for the CVM report that will not be published by that time, it’s unlikely that the issue will still be on the summit’s agenda because the decision has to be taken unanimously. European Commission spokesperson Mark Gray announced a week ago that the Cooperation and Verification Mechanism report for Romania will be published “at the start of 2014.” After the European official made the announcement, the Dutch Embassy in Bucharest pointed out that The Hague will wait for the CVM report before taking a decision on Romania’s Schengen accession.
Also last week, German Interior Minister Hans-Peter Friedrich stated before the JHA Council that he is waiting for European Commission Vice President Viviane Reding’s position on the possibility of sending back home the Europeans, including Romanians, who go to Germany for welfare. Prior to that, the German minister had stated for ‘Die Welt’ that the freedom of movement within the European Union should be “curtailed” in some cases. In reply, the Interior Affairs Ministry (MAI) pointed out on Sunday that Romania fulfills all technical and juridical conditions required to join the Schengen Area and that a possible decision of the member states should not be linked with the Roma issue, against the backdrop of the statements made by the German Interior Minister.

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