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European Western Balkans
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Zaev warns about increasing Euroskepticism in North Macedonia due to EU accession impasse

Zoran Zaev; Photo: The Government of North Macedonia

ATHENS – In an interview for POLITICO, Prime Minister of North Macedonia Zoran Zaev has warned the EU that it’s taken a reputational hit in the Western Balkans and will lose more ground to rival powers if it doesn’t start membership talks with his country and Albania soon.

“A lot of issues were not how our citizens expected and because of that Euroskepticism increases,” said Zaev, referring to Bulgaria’s veto and tardiness in delivery of the vaccines to the region.

Zaev said a failure to start talks would affect not just his country and Albania but also the wider region, where there will be more space for other powers, such as Russia and China in particular.

“So many sacrifices. And after that, the EU doesn’t deliver? That is a problem. We show more European values and European manners than the EU,” Zaev said in the interview.

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