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Borrell: Situation in the Western Balkans, "not so good"

Borrell: Situation in the Western Balkans, "not so good"

European Union High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Josep Borrell said the situation in the Western Balkans "is not so good".

Borrell made the comments on the eve of a meeting of EU foreign ministers, where the situation in the region - especially in Bosnia and Herzegovina and in relation to the Kosovo-Serbia dialogue - is expected to be a topic of discussion.

Borrell said that in Bosnia and Herzegovina there are tendencies that endanger the unity of this country and hinder its progress on the path to European integration.

EU Commissioner for Neighborhood and Enlargement Oliver Varhelyi says the relations of the Western Balkan countries with the EU are not only about enlargement, but also about aligning their foreign policy with that of the EU. .

Speaking on the eve of the meeting, Varhelyi said enlargement remains the EU's main tool for strengthening stability in the Western Balkans.

He said he expects that now, after the elections in Northern Macedonia and Bulgaria, there will be rapid positive developments on the ground, which would enable the start of membership negotiations between Northern Macedonia and the EU and between Albania and the EU. .

"We are ready for this and I still hope that this can happen before the end of this year," said Varhelyi.

According to the European Commission, both Albania and Northern Macedonia have met all the conditions for the start of negotiations, but this has been blocked in the European Council - in the case of Northern Macedonia by Bulgaria. This, then, has influenced the negotiations not to start even with Albania.

Varhelyi also warned of the swift implementation of the investment plan in the Western Balkans.

On the eve of this meeting, a document on the situation in the Western Balkans was prepared by the EU services, as a basis for today's discussions.

It says that in some parts of the Western Balkans region, the political situation is an "increasing challenge".

“Në Bosnje e Hercegovinë është thelluar kriza politike dhe dominojnë retorika dhe veprime përçarëse. Ka pasur kthim të tensioneve dhe incidente në veri të Kosovës. Ndasitë ndërpartiake kanë vazhduar ta destabilizojnë dhe paralizojnë sistemin politik në Mal të Zi. Mospajtimet mes partnerëve nga Ballkani Perëndimor janë duke mbajtur peng implementimin e integrimeve rajonale”, thuhet mes tjerash në këtë dokument.

Në takim pritet të diskutohet edhe për dialogun mes Kosovës dhe Serbisë, i cili, sipas burimeve të BE-së, “nuk ka pasur përparim në muajt e fundit”.
Burimet e BE-së thonë se Brukseli pret që palët në dialog të përqendrohen te zbatimi i marrëveshjeve të mëhershme, përmes hapave konkretë.

There is also a need for strong support from member states for the efforts of Borrell and EU Special Envoy Miroslav Lajcak in mediating the dialogue between Kosovo and Serbia.

"Parties should be encouraged to engage constructively and demonstrate positive results, including on regional agreements related to the common regional market, and to refrain from unilateral actions and divisive rhetoric, especially when it comes to northern Kosovo." , the document states.

On Tuesday, a new meeting is expected to take place in Brussels in the framework of the dialogue between Kosovo and Serbia, at the level of chief negotiators.

According to EU sources, the topics of discussion will be related precisely to the implementation of previous agreements, but also to the continuation of high-level dialogue.

Tiranapost.al