European Western Balkans

Opposition’s boycott means shirking responsibility

Duško Marković and Hoyt Brian Yee; Photo: Government of Montenegro

PODGORICA – MPs who boycott the Parliament shirk their responsibility, said US deputy assistant secretary of state Hoyt Brian Yee.

At the 2BS Forum in Budva on Friday, he said that Montenegro’s entry into NATO was the most dramatic change, although much has happened in the region this year.

He said that membership in the alliance was a remarkable achievement.

The US will continue supporting Montenegro at every step on its way to NATO, said Yee.

“Likewise, America will stand by each country of the region, which has this objective. We will support NATO as a pillar of global security. The partnership of the United States and the EU will not change. America is committed to the alliance,” he said.

According to Yee, Montenegro’s accession to NATO reinforces the consistency of the open door policy, but also reveals Russia’s commitment to undermine the progress of the Balkans in its European and Euro-Atlantic path, starting from, as he said, the insolent plan for Podgorica and support for movements in Bosnia to its efforts to isolate Kosovo.

“We saw a fiery nationalistic rhetoric and policy of divisions, we saw a tear in the Parliament of Kosovo, the politicians in the Serb Republic who threatened secession, the crowd that broke into the Parliament in Skopje, the opposition’s Parliament boycott in Montenegro. To avoid all this, the region’s leaders must find the political courage for unpopular but necessary reforms in the interest of citizens. I hope that the new prime minister of Kosovo will have the courage to adopt the agreement on the demarcation with Montenegro,” Yee said.

He added that governments in the region, including Montenegro, had to fight against corruption.

“Parliaments should represent and defend citizens’ interests. MPs who are boycotting the Parliament shirk their responsibility and ignore the former US President, Theodore Roosevelt’s advice that the credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, not to the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better,” Yee said.

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