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Juncker: EC to 'explore options' to help Bulgaria guard EU external border

Juncker: EC to 'explore options' to help Bulgaria guard EU external border
 

The European Commission is ready to examine the long-term needs of Bulgaria to guard the external borders of the EU and to consider the allocation of additional funding, commission President Jean-Claude Juncker has told Bulgarian head of state Roumen Radev.

A statement by the Bulgarian President's office on March 27 said that Juncker's letter was in response to calls made in Brussels by Radev and a written proposal that he sent to the EU institutions.

Radev, who took office on January 22, repeatedly has called for the adoption of a common operational plan of EU action in crisis situations and the provision of additional funding to enhance capacity to guard Bulgaria's borders, the statement said.

Currently the European Border and Coast Guard is conducting a vulnerability assessment of all EU countries, including Bulgaria, which will be ready in April this year.

Based on this evaluation the European Commission is ready to send a mission of experts to assess the long-term needs of Bulgaria in the field of border protection.

Juncker emphasised in his letter to Radev that the European Commission will carry out a deep analysis of the assessment presented by Bulgaria for the provision of additional financial support for management of external borders, far beyond the emergency aid granted that amounts to 167.3 million euro./IBNA

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