site.btaUPDATED Austrian Chancellor Describes Schengen's Expansion as "Unthinkable", Says That Has Nothing to Do with Bulgaria, Romania

Austrian Chancellor Describes Schengen's Expansion as "Unthinkable", Says That Has Nothing to Do with Bulgaria, Romania
Austrian Chancellor Describes Schengen's Expansion as "Unthinkable", Says That Has Nothing to Do with Bulgaria, Romania
Austrian Chancellor Karl Nehammer (BTA Photo)

Austrian Chancellor Karl Nehammer Tuesday described Schengen’s expansion as currently “unthinkable” for his country but pointed out that this stance has nothing to do with Bulgaria and Romania and is forced by a security issue. Nehammer talked with journalists after his meeting with Bulgarian Prime Minister Nikolay Denkov, who is on a one-day visit in Vienna.

The two had a one-on-one meeting, followed by bilateral talks with the participation of the Bulgarian delegation, which includes Interior Minister Kalin Stoyanov and Deputy Foreign Minister Elena Shekerletova.

“Schengen must be fixed. Until it is fixed, we cannot expand it,” Nehammer stressed. He underlined that the EU foreign ministers themselves say that the Schengen system does not function. More and more countries are introducing border controls, which means that the Schengen system is not living up to its true meaning, Nehammer pointed out. He said that 75% of migrants intercepted in Austria are not registered, which is a security problem.

“We are very grateful to Bulgaria for all the efforts and sacrifices it is making to preserve the external borders of the EU and thus of Austria,” the Austrian Chancellor added. The EU knows very well that Bulgaria and Romania contribute to Schengen and that is why it must support them financially, the Austrian Chancellor stressed.

Nehammer noted that 45,000 Bulgarians live in Austria and represent an important bridge between the two countries. Bulgaria is a very strong partner, which Austria needs for the protection of its external border because this is the key to the EU's security. Treaties should be strengthened with the third countries where migrants come from and a system for legal migration should be set up, he added. More financial aid for Bulgaria is needed in relation to border protection, Nehammer stressed.

“The protection of external borders is of great importance, which we also understood through the terrorist attack in Israel carried out by Hamas on October 4,” Nehammer highlighted. “We have to fight this terror, which cannot be a solution to political problems and only brings hatred, destabilizes society, reduces confidence in the legal system of countries. We must stand against Hamas, because Hamas is responsible for the chaos and terror in Israel and for the suffering of the Palestinian people in Gaza,” he said.

Nehammer announced that he would travel to Israel on Wednesday with the Czech Prime Minister "and we will have talks to show that we are on Israel's side."

/RY/

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By 10:41 on 23.07.2024 Today`s news

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