Prime Minister Nicolae Ciuca and Austria's Chancellor Karl Nehammer had a phone conversation on Wednesday evening regarding Romania's accession to Schengen, according to some official sources, told Agerpres.
On Wednesday, PM Nicolae Ciuca stated that Romania will go "all the way" with the demarches to join the Schengen Area and will ask for a vote in this regard in the Justice and Home Affairs Council (JHA) meeting on Thursday, underscoring that "the state of uncertainty cannot continue."
"We have clear arguments, on the spot, regarding Romania's preparation in relevant areas for the accession to Schengen, and our decision to contribute to European security is firm. We have proven these qualities over the years and especially in the context of the crisis in Ukraine. (...) Tomorrow, at the JHA Council, we shall vote. Joining the Schengen Area is our national goal," PM Ciuca stated at the Victoria Palace.
The Prime Minister brought to mind that European experts who came to Romania in October and November have confirmed that our country meets "absolutely all the necessary criteria" and deserves to be part of the Schengen Area.
Ciuca mentioned that the issue of illegal immigration is a "very politically sensitive" one in many member states and that there is a need for "more effective response" measures to this phenomenon.
Also on Wednesday, in Brussels, the Austrian Chancellor said that the discussion regarding Romania's and Bulgaria's accession to Schengen is not a political one, but a matter of security, because of the immigrants. He held a joint news conference with President of the European People's Party (EPP) Manfred Weber.