The enlargement of the Schengen Area has not been discussed at the JHA Council since the beginning of December, in which the Netherlands has not officially expressed its position towards Bulgaria after the elections that took place recently, but it is not excluded that the subject will be put on the agenda in another meeting in December, the Minister of the Interior, Catalin Predoiu, said in Arad, on Wednesday.
“The agenda of the future JHA Council is being discussed today and the discussions must also take into account the procedures that take place in the Netherlands following the elections. Elections have just been held there and the Government must clarify its position in Parliament and gain the confidence of the Parliament on a number of subjects. (…) The Dutch government, which had a position towards Bulgaria last year, is going to pronounce itself in Parliament and the Parliament is going to pronounce itself on this matter. Well, this procedure takes place sometime between December 4-6, therefore, this period, this procedure in the Dutch Parliament, coincides with the date on which the JHA Council will take place. So it is impossible that you can discuss the matter in detail in the JHA Council from December 4th to 6th, until the Dutch Government specifies its position towards Bulgaria. This does not exclude that there will be other JHA meetings during December,” said Predoiu, in a press conference held in Arad.
The minister pointed out that in the last year “Romania achieved a remarkable performance” in terms of border protection.
“All the numbers of illegal migration decreased, at all borders, especially at the western border, where there was a problem. The border with Serbia saw a decrease in the numbers of illegal migration by up to 90%,” said Predoiu.
In this context, he declared that “there is no longer any official position of any Euroean member state that questions Romania’s performance in terms of combating illegal migration and border protection”.