France takes EU Council presidency amid Macron’s demands for Schengen reform
Today, January 1, France assumes the presidency of the Council of the European Union for the first time in 14 years.
On this occasion, the EU Commission congratulated France on having taken on new responsibilities, committing to work hand in hand with its authorities for the next six months.
“France today assumes the rotating presidency of the Council of the EU. The slogan of @ Europe2022FR is: “Relaunch, power and belonging”. We will work hand in hand with France for the next six months“the Commission said in a tweet today.
According to the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the framework of the French presidency of the Council of the European Union will follow the broad political guidelines that President Macron set out in his speech on September 26, 2017 at the Sorbonne, for a sovereign, united Europe and democratic.
“For four years, President Macron and the Government have been working to build real European sovereignty, that is to say Europe’s ability to exist in the world to defend our values and our interests. The French Presidency of the Council of the European Union will continue this work for a more inclusive, sovereign and democratic Europe», Notes among others the MFA.
In recent years, French President Emmanuel Macron has repeatedly called “overhaul of the Schengen area», Accusing the rest of the Schengen member countries of imposing internal border controls even when they are not absolutely necessary.
More recently, while presenting his plans for the French presidency on December 9 at the Elysee Palace, Macron declared that France would work for a strong and “sovereign” EU, among other things, by pushing for the refoundation of space. Schengen in the first six months of 2022.
In another press conference in December, during a visit to Perthus, on the border with Spain, Macron called for the reorganization of the Schengen area to make it safer for citizens of the EU and travelers.
“Schengen should be overhauled in depth to rethink its organization, intensify our common border protection with a real security police at the external borders of the space, but also by strengthening the integration of our rules and … a joint operation by our ministers in in charge of internal and security matters», Then declared President Macron.
Macron’s demands to reorganize the Schengen area were backed by former German Chancellor Angela Merkel in November last year. At a meeting of the EU Council, Merkel stressed the urgent need to reform the Schengen area following the terrorist attacks in the bloc.