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Sassoli: Parliaments are key drivers of the enlargement process

Second Western Balkans Speakers‘ Summit; Photo: Twitter

BRUSSELS – “Enlargement means hope, for all sides. We call on the Council to keep its promises and speed up the enlargement process”, said President of the European Parliament David Sassoli, after the second Western Balkans Speakers‘ Summit.

“Together, we have reaffirmed the central role of our institutions in driving forward the enlargement process. As inclusive spaces of dialogue and exchange of views, Parliaments can foster mutual understanding and reconciliation in the Western Balkans, thus directly contributing to peace, stability, prosperity and stronger democracy in the region – all of which are key for our common European future”, Sassoli said.

He added that this role becomes even more important in light of the COVID -19 pandemic that has disrupted our societies and challenged democracies all around the world.

According to Sassoli, in a joint declaration, they have further called on the Council of the European Union to deliver on its promises and urgently take decisive action to accelerate the enlargement process.

“The European perspective and a merit-based EU accession process of the Western Balkans remain in the Union’s political, security and economic interest. Enlargement represents more than ever a geostrategic investment in a stable, strong and united Europe”, Sassoli told.

Today, the speakers of the parliaments of the Western Balkans came together for the second Western Balkans Speakers’ Summit at the invitation of European Parliament President David Sassoli.

They were joined by the Speakers of the Portuguese and Slovenian Parliaments, representing the current and upcoming Presidencies of the Council of the European Union.

In the joint declaration, speakers reaffirmed the central role of the parliaments in the enlargement process and commit to working together to further strengthen its parliamentary dimension, including in view of the 2021 EU-Western Balkans Summit.

They emphasised that parliaments should further advance their role as inclusive spaces of dialogue and exchange of views, fostering mutual understanding and reconciliation in the Western Balkans.

Speakers called on the Council of the EU to deliver on its promises and urgently take decisive action to accelerate the enlargement process,  emphasizing that the European perspective and a merit-based EU accession process of the Western Balkans remain in the Union’s very own political, security and economic interest.

They added that enlargement remains more than ever a geostrategic investment in a stable, strong, and united EU.

 

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