Monday, July 21, 2008

Bulgaria, Serbia, Romania poised for border control deal

Sofia Echo
17:55 Sun 20 Jul 2008 - Clive Leviev-Sawyer

It is expected that an agreement on eased border control will be signed in the autumn in Belgrade by Bulgaria, Serbia and Romania, enabling people living in the 20km border zone to move freely without visas, Bulgaria’s Interior Minister Mihail Mikov said on July 19 2008.

According to a report by Bulgarian news agency BTA, Mikov made the announcement at an international border convention meeting near the Kadi Bogaz pass. The deal on visa-free movement in the 20km border zone would promote co-operation among people, Mikov said.

Serbian news agency Tanjug added that Mikov said that the agreement on the border zone would be a step forward towards Serbia joining Bulgaria and Romania in the European Union.

A statement on the website of the Interior Minister on July 17 said Mikov had had talks in Vienna with his Serbia and Macedonian counterparts.

According to the statement, Mikov emphasised to Serbian interior minister Ivica Dacic that it was very important that a trilateral protocol on enhanced co-operation in combating serious and organised crime be signed by Serbia, Bulgaria and Romania.

Mikov handed his Macedonian counterpart Gordana Jankulovska a draft agreement on setting up a contact centre to enable liaison among the countries’ border police, police, customs and the services in charge of the administrative control of foreigners.

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