Bulgaria takes over rotating EU presidency

Brussels - Bulgaria took over the rotating 6-month presidency of the European Union on Monday, marking the first time that the Balkan country, which became an EU member in 2007, is holding the post.

Using the national motto "United we stand strong," Bulgaria's presidency is expected to focus on uniting the bloc on migration policy reforms and other issues.

Migration policy and Brexit

EU leaders agreed in December to pursue a compromise agreement on how to reform the EU's asylum system by June.

Bulgaria will also aim to raise the prospects of EU accession for its neighbouring countries in the Western Balkans. On May 17, EU leaders are set to meet their non-EU counterparts from the region at a summit in Sofia.

"When talking about united Europe, we should not forget that the Western Balkans need a clear European perspective and connectivity between them and with the member states," Bulgaria said on its EU presidency website.

Bulgaria is set to oversee the first part of negotiations on a future relationship between Britain and the EU after the country exits in March 2019.

Bulgaria took over the post from Estonia.