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Finland's Ambassador: Idea is to strengthen set of European tools for supporting state of law

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marjut akola

The Ambassador of Finland to Romania Marjut Akola said on Thursday that, in the context of his country's takeover of the rotating presidency of the EU Council, one of the objectives of this six-month mandate is to strengthen the set of European tools used to support the rule of law. 

There will be some concrete issues to be undertaken, there is the Commission report on Cooperation and Verification Mechanism (CVM), so we will also take over the CVM issue to get a conclusion from the Council and we will obviously have an analysis, a discussion on the rule of law. There must be a conclusion on this topic and we hope to reach this conclusion. The idea is to strengthen the set of European tools used to support the rule of law, the Ambassador said at a press conference held at the Representation European Commission in Romania. 

Minister of Foreign Affairs Teodor Melescanu said that, given the EU framework for the rule of law, he does not understand why it is necessary to maintain the CVM for Romania and Bulgaria. 

"From our point of view, the CVM has no sense in a European Union where there is a global system that refers to observing the rule of law by all countries. So from this point of view, I do not see what the argument is based on which two countries - which had this mechanism in place when joining the EU - I do not see why, for two countries, besides the rule of law mechanism that exists at EU level, you have another mechanism. Obviously, from our point of view we are an open country. The [CVM] mission came here. (...) There is all the availability of dialogue, but really - if you ask me - I cannot tell you why for Bulgaria and Romania another mechanism than the one that applies to all other countries, including Romania and Bulgaria, is needed," the minister said. 

Head of the European Commission Representation in Romania, Angela Cristea, mentioned that there had been discussions about the possibility of suspending the CVM and the continuation of monitoring under the EU Framework for the rule of law, but that for now the CVM is in place for Romania and Bulgaria. 

"We have this Rule of Law Framework - and it is under an analysis process to improve it. It is addressed to all member states and what we found when we encountered difficulties in some member states - and Article 7 was triggered - was that this is not necessarily the most effective instrument we have. On the other hand, we have for two member states another mechanism, the Mechanism for Cooperation and Verification, and here we look at it if it is still effective. At one point, in the spring of this year, there was a reflection on the functioning of the mechanism in Romania. A reflection in which we came to the conclusion that if we see that the mechanism does not still produces results, then we can suspend it - not close it, but suspend it - and continue monitoring within a wider framework, that is, within the framework provided by this mechanism for the rule of law. At the moment, as far as Romania is concerned, we remain in this monitoring process that the mechanism allows. Yesterday and the day before yesterday we had the first technical mission this year within the CVM," she said.

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