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Austrian Interior Ministry Confirms Agreement Has Been Reached with Bulgaria, Romania on Air Schengen

Austria has reached an agreement with Bulgaria and Romania on their accession to Schengen by air, and the agreement includes all of Austria’s demands, the Austrian Ministry of Interior said, as quoted by a Saturday article in the electronic issue of the Kurier daily. The document was sent to the Spanish EU Presidency on Friday evening, and now it is up to that Presidency and the European Commission to ensure the legal application of Air Schengen, the article reads. 
After the talks on Air Schengen between the interior ministers in mid-December, the negotiations on the biding legal text have been finalized, the article reads further. All three of Austria’s demands have been included in the document, namely: an increase in the number of Frontex employees in Bulgaria and Romania; allocation of financial resources by the European Commission for stable protection of the EU’s external borders in the two countries; stricter control on land borders and welcoming in Bulgaria and Romania of asylum-seekers, particularly from Afghanistan and Syria, who are currently in Austria.
The Kurier explains that Air Schengen means the passengers from Romania and Bulgaria will no longer fly to Europe through the terminals for international flights [to and from third countries]. As usual, the passport checks will be conducted at the gates by airlines with additional support from Austrian and Romanian/Bulgarian police. The earliest possible date for the regulation going into effect is March 2024, the article reads.