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Tensions rise around expected decision on Romania’s accession

Marţi, 9 mai 2006, 0:00

Tension in Bucharest and Sofia is rising following several media reports that the European Commission may not recommend the accession of Romania and Bulgaria in 2007 in its report on the two countries, due to be published on May 16.

The tension rose on Tuesday as international press agencies quoted a EC spokespersona who said the Commission might recommend that the accession take place in 2007, 2008 or conditionally in 2007.

The European official said the Commission was considering all the three versions in advance to the May 16 report with the latest one saying that the EC may express its "will" to recommend the accession next year, but linking the possibility to accelerated reforms in the two countries.

He refused to say whether the third scenario, which some European sources consider to be most probable, will involve the postponement of a final decision on the accession date by several months.

Meanwhile, EC president Jose Manuel Barroso said on Tuesday that in its report next week the Commission would make a clear decision on the date, setting it either for early 2007, or for early 2008.

Bulgarian authorities expressed their discontent about a possible decision to postpone the accession and called EU officials not to treat Bulgarians as second hand citizens of Europe. But the Romanian Foreign minister Razvan Mihai Ungureanu showed optimism regarding the expected EU decision.

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