Netherlands: Bulgaria Won't Join Schengen Anytime Soon

Bulgaria in EU | July 17, 2013, Wednesday // 11:22|  views

Dutch Ambassador to Bulgaria Karel van Kesteren. Photo by BGNES

Bulgaria will eventually enter the Schengen Agreement – but it will not happen soon, the Dutch Ambassador to the country has declared.

“When you want to give the key to your neighbor, you have to trust him,” His Excellency Karel van Kesteren said metaphorically in an interview for Btv on Wednesday.

The Ambassador explained that Bulgaria will be ready to join Europe’s border-free zone when its politicians unite and improve the atmosphere in the country, putting an end to “behind-the-scene” deals.

Van Kesteren expressed his concern over the fact that Bulgaria’s Socialist-led government has been relying on the support of ultranationalist outfit Ataka (Attack) in Parliament.

He sided with the Ambassadors of France and Germany in Sofia, who warned the Bulgarian government last week that the oligarchic model is incompatible with EU membership.

The unprecedented joint statement of Ambassadors Matthias Hoepfner and Philippe Autie came amid the ongoing massive anti-government rallies in the country.

“Everyone knows that there have been appointments made under the influence of political decisions – and this has to stop,” van Kesteren said Wednesday.

The series of anti-government protests in Bulgaria was triggered by the scandalous appointment of controversial media mogul Delyan Peevski as Chair of the State Agency for National Security (DANS) on June 14.

Although the appointment was revoked, Bulgarians went on to demand that the cabinet of PM Plamen Oresharski resign collectively.

Massive peaceful rallies have been staged in the capital Sofia for 33 consecutive days now, with a new protest planned for Wednesday evening.

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Tags: Netherlands, Dutch, Schengen, Schengen Agreement, Karel van Kesteren, France, Germany, Ambassadors, Bulgaria, protests, oligarchic model, oligarchs, Plamen Oresharski


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