Bulgarian PM Blames Schengen Failure on Dutch Far Rights

Politics » BULGARIA IN EU | March 2, 2012, Friday // 12:11
Bulgaria: Bulgarian PM Blames Schengen Failure on Dutch Far Rights The Prime Minister told reporters that he expected Bulgaria's sea and air borders to be opened in October. Photo by BGNES

One single political party - the Dutch PVV of Geert Wilders - is responsible for Bulgaria's Schengen delay, according to Bulgarian PM Boyko Borisov.

On Friday, it was made clear that no decision on Bulgaria and Romania's bids to enter the Schengen Agreement will be taken earlier than September.

Despite EU pressure, the Dutch government maintained its stance that Sofia and Bucharest have not shown sufficient progress in fighting corruption and organized crime. The country wants to see this summer's Co-operation and Verification Mechanism Report on the two EU newcomers before deciding on their Schengen future.

"This is unprecedented in EU and it will backfire on them very, very badly, because not a country but a single political party is tantalizing the whole European Council. Not the Netherlands, but a single Dutch party. This is the problem," Borisov claimed. He believes that his Dutch counterpart Mark Rutte is doing everything possible to maintain PVV's support for his government.

Borissov quoted European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso as saying that Bulgaria and Romania protect the Schengen borders far better than other European countries which are members of Schengen.

The Prime Minister told reporters that he expected Bulgaria's sea and air borders to be opened in October.

Bulgaria and Romania were expected to enter Schengen in the spring of 2011, but their entry was blocked by countries such as France, Germany, the Netherlands and Finland, who had worries that problems with organized crime and corruption might jeopardize safety in the Schengen Area.

Both EU newcomers have been placed under the so-called EU Co-operation and Verification Mechanism in justice and home affairs, in view of perceived problems in the management of corruption and organized crime.

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Tags: : European Council, the Netherlands, Dutch, Co-operation and Verification Mechanism, CVM, report, Schengen Agreement, Schengen, Dutch Prime Minister, Mark Rutte, president, European parliament, Geert Wilders, Boyko Borisov, PVV

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