Germany Still Against Bulgaria, Romania in Schengen

Politics » BULGARIA IN EU | September 4, 2011, Sunday // 10:55
Bulgaria: Germany Still Against Bulgaria, Romania in Schengen German Federal Interior Minister Hans-Peter Friedrich (C) speaks with police officers from Poland, Switzerland, and Austria (L-R) on 20 August 2011 in Berlin. EPA/BGNES

Germany's federal Ministry of Interior has no intention whatsoever to reverse its negative opinion on the readiness of Bulgaria and Romania to enter the Schengen free movement area.

"At present, Sofia and Bucharest are still not ready to join the Schengen Agreement," stated German Internal Affairs Minister Hans-Peter Friedrich.

"We are not enthusiastic and taking into account the rather negative reports on the two countries, we still doubt the purposefulness of such a step," clarified German Ministry of Interior representative Jens Teschke.

According to Teschke, Minister Friedrich intends to further discuss the matter with his counterparts from France and the Netherlands, two EU members who have also been especially vocal against Bulgaria and Romania's joining.

The two countries were set to join Schengen in the spring of 2011, but accession was indefinitely delayed following opposition by Germany, France, the Netherlands and others. Renewed considerations are expected to take place in the fall.

The arguments against referred not to the two countries degree of fulfilment of Schengen technical requirements, but rather to worries related to the level of corruption and organized crime, which officially are not connected to Schengen membership.

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Tags: Hans-Peter Friedrich, Germany, France, Netherlands, EU, Schengen, Romania, corruption, organized crime
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