European Western Balkans

Mogherini: Montenegro exceeded expectations

Federica Mogherini and Johannes Hahn; Photo: European Union

STRASBOURG – High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Federica Mogherini, said the EU community saw Montenegro achieve results in the past three years that were considered impossible. She pointed out that the Western Balkans are part of Europe and will be part of the European Union (EU), assessing that Montenegro and Serbia made the biggest progress from all candidate countries.

At a press conference in Strasbourg, where she presented the European Commission’s (EC) Progress Report for the Western Balkan countries, Mogherini said the enlargement policy for the EU is an investment in the security, peace and prosperity of Europe as a whole.

“The countries of the region have carried out important reforms and modernized their economies. Of the six Western Balkans partners, Montenegro and Serbia have made the best progress in the negotiations”, Mogherini said.

The EC recommends that the Council opens pre-accession negotiations with Albania and Macedonia.

Mogherini also said she would continue to encourage dialogue on the normalization of relations between Belgrade and Pristina.

Enlargement Commissioner Johannes Hahn said this is a good day for the Western Balkans.

“Albania and Macedonia have done a lot in the past months and this needs to be recognized”, he said adding that there are no shortcuts on the road to the EU. He also stressed that this process is based on results and that quality is more important than speed in this case.

Commenting on the statement by French President Emanuel Macron, who said that the EU must first reorganize within itself, and only then receive new members, Hahn said he does not see any contradiction in that.

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