Fundamental rights check for all EU countries?
In a draft resolution passed on Tuesday the European Parliament calls for the establishment of a system for regular monitoring of the state of democracy, the rule of law and fundamental rights in all EU member states. This could lead to the abolishment of the current system under which only Bulgaria and Romania are monitored. Bulgaria's press is divided.
EU monitoring for all states fairest option
It would be appropriate to apply EU monitoring to all member states and not just to Bulgaria and Romania, the daily Duma concludes:
“The EU monitoring system, together with the refusal to integrate Bulgaria and Romania into the Schengen Area, is one of the main reasons why the two countries feel they are being treated unfairly by the older member states. The monitoring mechanism was created especially for Bulgaria and Romania and is only applied here. Croatia, which joined the EU later, is not subject to monitoring. … Then at last, Brussels' accusing finger would not just be pointing at us, but at all EU states. After all, corruption is not exclusive to Bulgaria and Romania. … We aren't the only ones who have problems with the rule of law and democracy.”
Bulgaria cannot back out now
Since Bulgaria has effected very little progress in its justice system and the battle against crime and corruption, it makes no sense to suspend EU monitoring now, news website Dnevnik argues:
“Even if a new monitoring mechanism is created to replace the existing one, that doesn't mean Bulgaria can simply withdraw without first fulfilling its obligations towards the EU. The mere hope that this could even be an option shows how eager our corrupt political class is to be rid of EU monitoring, which for all its limitations and shortcomings, has been the only effective tool for bringing about reform in the past decade. … Without this mechanism the corrupt establishment would have won the battle long ago.”