Bulgaria’s PM has made a 6-Month Schengen-Related Commitment to the Dutch PM
"The Netherlands is carefully monitoring the actions for judicial reform in Bulgaria and appreciates the efforts in this direction", it became known from a telephone conversation between Prime Minister Nikolay Denkov and his Dutch colleague Mark Rutte, reports the government press service. In the conversation with Denkov, the Dutch Prime Minister showed detailed knowledge of the situation and showed interest in the concrete steps to achieve true rule of law in Bulgaria.
Denkov emphasized Bulgaria's efforts to prove real results through legislative changes and cited as an example the adoption of a mechanism for investigating the chief prosecutor by independent magistrates. He presented the next steps towards changing the situation through anti-corruption legislation and the election of a new Supreme Judicial Council, outlining a time horizon of about six months for their implementation.
In December last year, Bulgaria's Schengen membership was blocked by Austria and the Netherlands. Romania was stopped by only Austria, while Croatia became a full member of the free movement zone by a unanimous decision in January.
The Netherlands asked the Bulgarian authorities to prove that they are fighting corruption and have not given up on judicial reform. Austria's demands seemed far more difficult to implement, with Austrian Chancellor Karl Nehammer even beginning to push for a new fence along the border with Turkey, which was rejected by the European Commission.
In the conversation, the Bulgarian Prime Minister emphasized the sensitivity of Bulgarian society on the subject of "Schengen" and noted the country's actions on a joint pilot project with the European Commission for the prevention of illegal migration. The Dutch Prime Minister...