Romanian MEP calls Austria’s Schengen accession position “discriminatory”

Romanian MEP calls Austria's Schengen accession position
Photo: Oksana Gogu - Unsplash

Romanian MEP Eugen Tomac has criticised Austria for their opposition to Romania’s accession to the Schengen area, calling their position “discriminatory”. 

In an interview with news site Mediafax Tomac explains that for many years the only country that had opposed Romania joining Schengen was the Netherlands. As a result, he had spent many years trying to convince decision-makers in the country to change their mind, as well as working with Swedish politicians to ensure their support. 

However, after finally managing to ensure the support of the leaderships of both nations, Austria has now presented its opposition to Romania’s accession. Tomac tells Mediafax that he is exasperated by Vienna’s opposition and asks what should Romania do now if just one Schengen member can block the country’s future? He also points to a history of discrimination from Austria against Romania, saying that in the past they have introduced measures that have been specifically targeted at Romanian migrants. This led Romania to bring the cases to the attention of the EU courts, who in 2020 obliged Austria to comply with regulations and change their policies. 

The decision on Romania’s accession will be made on 8 December, with Tomac saying that he will request that the “European Commission defends European law and the Schengen Regulation in the face of political excesses on the part of Austria”. 

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