Slovakia lagging behind in Schengen preparations

INTERIOR Minister Robert Kaliňák announced at a press conference on Wednesday that Slovakia is lagging behind in its preparations for joining the Schengen agreement, originally scheduled for October 2007, but that it has significant reserves to handle the necessary preparations.

Kaliňák said that Slovakia launched preparations to join the free movement area within the EU space in the year 2000 but that “not everything that could have been done was done in those six years”.

The minister still hopes that Slovakia will enter the Schengen area in the autumn of 2007 as originally planned and it is therefore necessary to adopt some urgent measures. One of them will be the establishment of the post of cabinet appointee for Schengen affairs, whose task will be to coordinate the work of individual ministries concerning the Schengen area entry.

The name of the appointee will be known within a few days. According to the minister there are three candidates for the job.

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