Croatia has obtained the green light to enter the Schengen area of free movement from 1 January 2023, announced the Czech presidency of the EU. The decision is made by the ministers of internal affairs. Romania’s and Bulgaria’s applications to join Schengen were rejected due to the Austrian veto motivated by the risk of ending up with uncontrolled flows of migrants from the south-eastern “corridor”. The Schengen area thus grows for the first time in 10 years. Commissioner Johansson said she was “disappointed” by the two countries not joining the Schengen area.
Johansson, welcome Croatia, divided on Romania-Bulgaria
«Congratulations to Croatia. But to Bulgaria and Romania I say: you deserve to join, you have strong support from almost all the Member States and from the Commission. I express disappointment and sadness, because when we are not united we are weaker. But I am convinced that we will achieve the entry of Bulgaria and Romania into this legislature and it will be my priority to make that happen”. This was stated by Ylva Johansson, European Commissioner for Home Affairs.
Schinas, seek agreement on Romania-Bulgaria at summit
“I am delighted that Croatia’s efforts have been recognised. Congratulations to Andrej Plenkovic and Davor Bozinovic (respectively Croatian prime minister and vice prime minister with responsibility for the Interior) on Croatia’s entry into Schengen. Today is a day of disappointment for Romania and Bulgaria but our efforts will not stop there. The leaders will meet next week. We have to find a way out.” The vice president of the European commission, Margaritis Schinas, writes this in a tweet, commenting on the decisions taken today at the Internal Affairs Council regarding the enlargement of the area of free movement.