Serbia "closer to starting EU talks than ever"Source: Tanjug
DUBLIN -- Suzana Grubješić, Serbia's deputy prime minister in charge of European integration, on Monday said Serbia had never been closer to starting EU accession talks.
"Serbia has never been closer to starting EU accession talks, and the enlargement process stays in effect and will be one of the priorities for Ireland as the presiding country - these are the key impressions from today's meeting of European affairs ministers from EU member countries," Grubješić's office said.
The minister, who was in Dublin, represented Serbia at the meeting "at which the ministers agreed that enlargement was one of the most successful European policies".
"I was given recognition at every step for the policy the Serbian government is implementing when it comes to European integration, and truly, after this meeting I can say once again that Serbia has a great chance of getting a starting date for the talks by the end of Ireland's presidency, because this is something we have earned with our effort," said Grubješić.
According to the release, the European affairs minister especially stressed that Serbia needed to continue internal reforms, in particular in the fight against corruption, judiciary and the economy.
During her stay in Dublin, Grubješić also met with Linas Linkevicius, the foreign minister of Lithuania, the only country in the EU whose parliament has yet to recognize Serbia's Stabilization and Association Agreement with the EU. Linkevicius assured her his country would not stand in the way of Serbia's EU accession.
Grubješić will wrap up her tour of several European countries in Brussels on Tuesday, where she will address members of the European Parliament's Committee on Foreign Affairs, which is expected to discuss an EP resolution on EU enlargement to the Western Balkans.