The EU Council Presidency in Slovenia sees a “convergence” in the long-running dispute over the EU’s future asylum and immigration policy. Foreign Minister Anze Lugar said in an interview with APS that European Union countries could agree to a joint fingerprint file Eurodac this year.
Lugar said negotiations on immigration have been too slow because the planned EU package touches on a wide range of policy areas and member states have “slightly different views”. “But you have to say opinions are converging.” The reform will not be fully completed until the next presidency.
Few Concerns About Litigation With Poland
In the legal dispute with Poland, Lugar did not want to hear about the doomsday scenarios. “I think no one has an interest in the (EU, NB) break-up, and therefore I think that can’t happen.” The current “increasing volume” in the debate is neither in the interest of European institutions nor in the interest of member states.
He believes that “we can find a solution within this framework to reconcile the views of states regarding the primacy of European law, but also to ensure the same judicial practice for all member states.” The conservative Slovenian politician also showed an understanding of Polish criticism of the judiciary, especially since he saw in Slovenia that courts measure by two criteria.
Dialogue with Western Balkan countries has been a success
Lugar expressed his satisfaction with the results of the Slovenian presidency so far. When asked what he is particularly proud of, he noted the progress made in the EU’s dialogue with Western Balkan countries. You have here made a “clear commitment to continuing the expansion strategy”.
Lugar saw no negative implications for the council presidency from the arguments surrounding Prime Minister Janez Gansa, who has repeatedly caused a sensation with disingenuous tweets on the rhetoric of his European critics.
Lugar came to Vienna on Friday to attend the meeting of foreign ministers of the “Central 5” countries (Austria, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Slovenia). The Slovenian top diplomat praised the initiative launched last year by then-Foreign Minister Alexander Schallenberg (ÖVP).
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