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Romania to enter Schengen area before 2019

Staff Writer |
The special justice monitoring of Romania will be lifted and the country will enter the Schengen area before taking over the Presidency of the Council of the European Union (EU) in 2019, visiting European Commission (EC) President Jean-Claude Juncker said.

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"You cannot preside over the EU when you have the impression that you are controlled and observed by others," Juncker underscored in his speech delivered at the reception offered by Romanian President Klaus Iohannis on Europe Day at the Cotroceni Presidential Palace.

The special monitoring of Romania under the Cooperation and Verification Mechanism must be ended and this will be so, stressed the EC president.

Juncker expressed his hope that by then Romania could also become a Schengen member state. "I would not want new criteria and new requirements to be add to the already existing ones," he said.

Schengen accession has been a long process for Romania, whose entry into the border-free area has been constantly delayed since 2011, despite Bucharest authorities' claims that the country had done all the needed preparations.

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