Serwer about Kosovo and Metohija: "Serbia has given up"

John Hopkins University professor Daniel Serwer believes that the European Union-Western Balkans Summit leaves the door open for future EU enlargement.

Source: Kosovo online
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Foto: TV B92
Foto: TV B92

He assessed that there were certain results at the summit.

"I think it helped to open the door to enlargement a little bit, and they clearly said that the countries of the Western Balkans must meet strict criteria in order to join the EU," Serwer said, as reported by N1.

Referring to Slovenia’s proposal for 2030 as the year for the regional countries to join the EU, Serwer said he was not surprised that specific dates weren't mentioned. „I think the mentioning of 2030 was positive.“

According to his opinion, for one or two countries, the membership could happen even before.

„No doubt the joining is not automatic. It requires a consensus of all member states, and that is difficult to achieve. It will be easier when the EU economy recovers from the COVID-19-related recession,“ the U.S. expert claims.

Serbia is not sitting on two chairs, but on the one directed to Russia and China

Asked what he thinks about the frustration of EU leaders regarding the relationship that Serbia established with China and Russia, but also other frustrations of other Western Balkan countries that cannot join the EU, Serwer said that it is now clear that "Serbia no longer sits on two chairs".

"The same goes for some other countries in the Western Balkans, but to a certain extent for Montenegro, whose government likes Russians, and even the previous government had huge investments from China, like a motorway that is under construction,“ Serwer said.

At the same time, he added, Kosovo, Albania and North Macedonia remained focused on the West and the EU membership. That is why, he believes, one or two countries can join the bloc before 2030 if they „get serious in maintaining democracy and open society.“

Asked whether he agrees with the assessment that the agreement on the license plates in Kosovo presents a success for Serbia, he answered: "You can predict that whenever there are negotiations, the negotiators go home and claim to have won. It is clear that Serbia is the one that gave up, and that Pristina had made a modest step in the good direction of the West."

However, he assessed that the issue of license plates is only a small issue, that there are hundreds of others, such as the issue of the missing persons and financial issues.

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