Premier Viorica Dancila met European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker, who managed, in his typical style, to ironize what is happening in Romania: the frequent replacement of Premiers.
European Commission President Jean Claude Juncker stated on Wednesday that he talked with Premier Viorica Dancila about the outlook of Romania’s presidency of the Council of the EU and about the importance of this mandate, and expressed his hope that the Mechanism of Cooperation and Verification (MCV) enforced on Romania and Bulgaria would be lifted. He deemed that “things are working well,” even though there is the impression that “certain political means in Romania would like to take some liberties in what concerns the strict and severe enforcement of the rule of law.”
“Europe holds no kind of secret for Viorica Dancila. She is the fifth Premier I welcome here during my term and let’s hope this cycle stops and she’ll remain in office, because I don’t know where everybody’s going. Iohannis is a pro-European President, so is the Premier, so is Cretu. The responsibility of the future Romanian presidency is very big. I’m convinced that the MCV will be lifted before the end of this Commission’s mandate; Romania’s place is in the Schengen Area, we mustn’t exclude Romania because of some ambitions. Sometimes we have the impression that certain political means in Romania want to take some liberties from the strict enforcement of the rule of law, and we talked about justice,” Jean Claude Juncker stated at the joint press conference with Viorica Dancila.
“I evoked the outlook of the Romanian Presidency in the first half of 2019, when everything will culminate with the Summit in Sibiu (…) and we will be able to almost finalise the dossier regarding the financial results, extremely important for our friends from Romania,” Jean Claude Juncker stated after his meeting with Premier Viorica Dancila.
He emphasised that “the responsibility of the future Romanian presidency is very big.”
“I once again told the Prime Minister that I’m convinced the MCV on Romania and Bulgaria should be lifted, terminated before the end of this Commission’s mandate, and that Romania’s place is clearly within the Schengen Area, we should no longer exclude Romania out of these citizens’ ambitions that have to do with the Schengen Area,” Juncker added.
However, he expressed his hope that the judicial system “will not be tested.”
“Things are working well; still, sometimes we may have the impression that certain political means in Romania would like to take some liberties in what concerns the strict and severe enforcement of the rule of law. I talked with the Prime Minister and I had the conviction that all efforts will be made for the judicial system to function. We hope it will not be tested,” the European Commission President added.
Dancila: We hope the MCV will be lifted, it’s not normal for Romania to take over the Presidency of the Council of the EU with a sanction
In a joint press conference with Jean Claude Juncker and Corina Cretu, the Premier stated that Romania meets all conditions to join Schengen, and also to have the Mechanism of Cooperation and Verification (MCV) lifted.
Romanians hope the Mechanism of Cooperation and Verification will be lifted by 2019, because “it’s not normal for Romania to take over the presidency [of the Council of the EU] with a sanction,” Premier Viorica Dancila stated on Wednesday in Brussels.
“The European dimension will be important for Romania, for the Government of Romania. We will make all efforts to have a fair, transparent cooperation with European institutions, with the President of the European Commission respectively,” the Prime Minister said. “Romania’s European path is linked to President Juncker. (…) We hope that during Mr Juncker’s Presidency we would be able to talk about Romania’s Schengen accession. Romania meets all conditions from the Commission’s standpoint. And, likewise, [we hope] the MCV would be lifted, because it’s not normal for Romania to take over the presidency with a sanction,” the Head of the Romanian Government added.
In her turn, Commissioner Corina Cretu warned Romania. “I hope the new Government would do everything for the absorption of European grants, but also for holding the presidency of the Council of the EU,” Cretu said.
Viorica Dancila: We’ll have a difficult presidency. There’s Brexit, the multiannual financial framework, and securing the external borders
“We must discuss the dissatisfactions point-by-point! Nobody must intervene in the judiciary. I don’t know what will happen to Laura Codruta Kovesi. We must allow the judiciary to do its duty. In Romania, nobody intervenes, this is a good thing. I would like for all citizens of Romania, regardless of office, to observe the European directive that says that the presumption of innocence exists, and that justice is served by judges,” Viorica Dancila said.
Premier Dancila was in Brussels on Tuesday and Wednesday, on her first trip abroad in her capacity as Head of the Romanian Government.
She met European Council President Donald Tusk and European Parliament President Antonio Tajani on Tuesday, and European Commission President Jean Claude Juncker on Wednesday.