European Western Balkans

Reactions to EU decision in Tirana: Conditionality should not be a moving target

European Council meeting; Photo: European Union

BRUSSELS – Apart from traditional issues of infrastructure, energy, roaming and human contacts, political fallout of the EU summit on 17 and 18 October was also one of the topics of discussion at the fifth Tirana Connectivity Forum, EURACTIV reports.

Sokol Dedja, Deputy Minister for Europe in Albania’s foreign ministry, said he was “not in a complaining mood” but insisted that the most important thing was the EU to remain “credible”.

He also said that it is unclear what the proposed change of accession methodology would be, adding that his country does not have a problem with “a more demanding conditionality”.

It is just the endgame – EU accession, that should not be changed, Dedja stressed. He insisted that “conditionality should not become a moving target”.

According to EURACTIV, Bojan Maricik, special adviser to Prime Minister of North Macedonia Zoran Zaev, who also participated in the event, said that it had taken took almost a decade for the pro-EU forces to defeat the old politics of nationalism, and that the lack of positive decision of the EU Council risks aggravating the internal situation in his country.

“Now, after all these years, we are asking ourselves is the EU actually serious about the Western Balkans. Either the opportunity will be grasped, or it will be lost for another decade”, Maricik said.

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