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President Purvanov: "We need Regional Version of Europe 2020 Strategy"

24. June 2010. | 07:02

Source: BTA

President Georgi Purvanov, who is participating in the Summit of Heads of State and Government
of the South East European Cooperation Process (SEECP) in Istanbul on Wednesday, said that a pragmatic regional version of the Europe 2020 Strategy should be drawn up, his Press Secretariat said.

President Georgi Purvanov, who is participating in the Summit of Heads of State and Government
of the South East European Cooperation Process (SEECP) in Istanbul on Wednesday, said that a pragmatic regional version of the Europe 2020 Strategy should be drawn up, his Press Secretariat said.

Addressing the participants, Purvanov said the next stage of EU enlargement was expected to take place in the Balkans.

He noted with satisfaction Turkey's and Croatia's progress towards EU membership and the successful implementation of the Stabilisation and Association Agreements of Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, Montenegro and FYRMacedonia.

Purvanov stressed the great importance of the elimination of visas as an obstacle to communication among people in Europe. Bulgaria was one of the countries which proposed visa liberalization between the EU and the Western Balkans, he said.

He added that he was confident that all those countries and their citizens would be able to travel visa free in the region and in the EU countries by the year's end. The necessary prerequisite is to step up the implementation of EU requirements, he said.

Purvanov also noted the extremely important role of parliamentary cooperation in the region, and said that the
declaration adopted by the 8th Conference of the SEECP Speakers of Parliament held in Antalya formed a good basis for improved and expanded cooperation.

Bulgaria supports the setting up of a working group which will plan a model for the broadening of cooperation and is convinced that the International Secretariat for Parliamentary Cooperation in Sofia has the capacity to cooperate effectively with the working group.

The Bulgarian President wished success to Montenegrin President Filip Vujanovic, whose country is the next Chairman-in-Office of the Process. He gave assurances that Bulgaria would continue to actively support the strengthening and broadening of cooperation in Southeastern Europe.

"Turkey achieved many positive things for strengthening the security and stability on the Balkans," Bulgarian Foreign Minister Nickolay Mladenov said, interviewed by the Turkish national radio and television. Mladenov attends the SEECP Summit of Heads of State and Government.

Asked to assess Turkey's European perspective, Mladenov said that the EU needs to be transparent with regard to the country's candidacy for membership. He voiced a hope that Turkey's negotiations on its EU candidacy will end with a positive outcome for the country.

"In the past years Turkey made many positive reforms. The EU member states have to treat Turkey fairly and sincerely," Mladenov said.

Answering another topical question for the country, namely whether Ankara veers away from its hitherto foreign policy course, Mladenov said that it is totally normal for Turkey to strengthen ties with its Eastern neighbours, which is important for the country's security.

"Turkey's security is important for the security of the entire region," said the Bulgarian Foreign Minister.

Mladenov also stressed that combatting terrorism is a common problem of all countries. "Turkey actively participates with all its institutions in the fight against terrorism," Mladenov said.

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