The European Union leaders who came to the informal Summit were welcomed with flags and cheers in the Great Square of Sibiu and after they had the family photograph taken on a podium covered with a giant carpet depicting the EU flag, the Brussels leaders and the heads of state of the community bloc headed toward the crowd who chanted "Europe!."In the first part of the ceremony held on Thursday, the cars of the heads of state and government started to arrive in downtown Sibiu, with the leaders being greeted by President Klaus Iohannis.
On either side of Nicolae Balcescu Boulevard, next to the small fences and waving flags with the logo of the Romanian Presidency at the EU Council or flags of the EU and Romania, the curious people awaited those who lead the European states.
When German Chancellor Angela Merkel got out of the official car, she was cheered and applauded. Luxembourg's Prime Minister Xavier Bettel was more nonchalant. On his way to the Great Square, he stopped to shake the hands of some people, with whom he exchanged a few words.
In order to enter the perimeter designated to the event, some people had to wait for good minutes to pass through security filters.
On the red carpet, the European leaders who arrived in Sibiu talked about what kind of European Union they want, about the future elections to the European Parliament, but also about the idea of an Europe that protects. In fact, France's President Emmanuel Macron mentioned one of his favourite projects - a rethought Schengen.
The EU leaders attended on Thursday a first round of the informal meeting of the European Council with President of the European Parliament Antonio Tajani.
The official outdoor photograph was up next, after which all the attendees went to the Brukenthal Museum for a working lunch, which will be followed by a second working session of the informal Summit of the EU leaders.
At the end of talks, they will present the "Sibiu Declaration," a document labelled in the speeches of several EU leaders as being an "ambitious" one.