Federica Mogherini visits Western Balkans

  • Liis Einstein
  • 7.3.2017 11:33

The EU High Representative, Federica Mogherini visited six Western Balkans from 2 - 4 March to promote relations with the EU and to set the ground for the upcoming Balkans Summit on 12 July. She is expected to report to the EU Summit on 9 – 10 March.

Mogherini mentioned during her trip that the Western Balkan states are part of Europe and expected to join the EU. Yet, the progress on accession of Western Balkan countries to the EU remains problematic. Macedonia struggles to form a government since elections in December 2016. Kosovo, independent since 2008, still needs to ratify the border agreement with Montenegro to move towards a visa-free travel zone and accession talks with the EU. Also, relations between Kosovo and Serbia remain tense. Serbia’s ally Russia refuses to recognize the independence of Kosovo and is against the EU membership of other Balkan states. Mogherini’s speech at the Serbian Parliament was rudely disturbed by pro-Russian chants from the Serbian Radical Party. Aleksandar Vucic, Serbian Prime Minister, confirmed that the popularity of pro-Russian nationalists is on the rise.

About author: Liis Einstein

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