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Postupak : 2012/2866(RSP)
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Odabrani dokument : B7-0186/2013

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Rasprave :

PV 22/05/2013 - 16
CRE 22/05/2013 - 16

Glasovanja :

PV 23/05/2013 - 13.10
CRE 23/05/2013 - 13.10

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Wednesday, 22 May 2013 - Strasbourg Revised edition

16. 2012 progress report on the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (debate)
Video of the speeches

  Elnök. − A következő pont a Tanács és a Bizottság nyilatkozatai – A Bosznia-Hercegovináról szóló 2012. évi eredményjelentés (2012/2865(RSP)


  Lucinda Creighton, President-in-Office of the Council. − Mr President, I am very grateful for this opportunity to set out the Council’s position on the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia. I would also like to thank this Parliament, and your rapporteur, Richard Howitt in particular, for his valuable work on the issue and for your excellent resolution. Both institutions very much share the same assessment of the situation, and that helps us collectively in our ongoing contacts with the authorities in Skopje.

The Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia has been a candidate country since December 2005 but of course has had very close relations with the EU since well before then. The country is important in the region, being fully involved in regional initiatives such as the Regional Cooperation Council and the South-East European Cooperation Process.

In its conclusions on enlargement from December 2012 the Council welcomed the progress made in a number of key policy areas. These included the legislative framework for elections, freedom of expression, and public administration. The Council also took note of the review of the implementation of the Ohrid Framework Agreement and, as you do in your resolution, encourages the government to move swiftly to the next stage of the review.

The High Level Accession Dialogue (HLAD) has acted as a catalyst for reform. This momentum has to be sustained, and particular attention is needed in the area of the rule of law, including on issues such as freedom of expression, the fight against corruption and inter-ethnic relations and reconciliation.

The Council largely shared the Commission’s assessment that the political criteria continue to be sufficiently met and took note of its recommendation that accession negotiations be opened with the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia.

However, maintaining good neighbourly relations is essential, and that has to include a negotiated and mutually-accepted solution to the name issue, under the auspices of the UN. I know this Parliament shares our view that the long-standing discussions on the name issue should be brought to a definitive conclusion as soon as possible. The Council has welcomed the momentum generated by the Greek proposal for a memorandum of understanding. There has also been some positive progress in discussions between the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia and Bulgaria.

With a view to a possible decision on opening accession negotiations with the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, the Council invited the Commission to report on progress. Last month the Commission presented that report, which assesses progress on the implementation of EU-related reforms (under the High Level Accession Dialogue) as well as in the area of good neighbourly relations and specifically on the name issue.

The main conclusion of the Commission’s report is that the reform process is largely back on track after the political crisis of January-February. Relations with neighbours remain good, and there have been some positive developments in bilateral relations with Bulgaria and Greece. Formal talks on the name issue under the auspices of the UN have also made some progress during the period covered by the report, which also emphasised the importance of the timely implementation of the political agreement of 1 March 2013.

The Council is now considering the Commission’s report, with a view to further discussion at the June General Affairs Council. Ireland, as holder of the EU Presidency, will facilitate discussion of the report and will seek to see the issue progress.

In the meantime, it is vital that the political leadership in the country sustains and develops the EU integration process, despite the difficult background and circumstances. I know that Parliament shares this view and that you will use your contacts to help achieve this.


  Štefan Füle, Member of the Commission. − Mr President, I would like to pay tribute to the quality of the report which has been prepared by your rapporteur, Richard Howitt. I welcome the supportive stance you have taken towards the country’s efforts in the accession process. I also share your concern about the risk of prolonging the status quo.

For the purpose of today’s debate, let me recall the main conclusions of the Commission’s spring report on the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia. First, the implementation of reforms is ongoing. At the latest meeting of the High-Level Accession Dialogue held in Skopje on 9 April 2013, we noted that action had been taken in relation to almost all the Dialogue targets. Secondly, steps had also been taken on good neighbourly relations, particularly with Bulgaria and Greece.

We were also encouraged by the fact that formal talks on the name issue took on a new momentum in April 2013 with another proposal from the United Nation Secretary-General’s Special Representative which he hopes can lead to a breakthrough. Having said this, I remain deeply concerned by the follow-up to the political crisis which affected the country last winter. An agreement was reached on 1 March 2013 to overcome the crisis. This allowed the opposition, SDSM, to return to parliament and participate in the recently held local elections.

However, other elements of this agreement have not yet been fully implemented, in particular the setting up of a committee of inquiry into the events of 24 December 2012, which should make recommendations to avoid a recurrence; the signature of a cross-party memorandum of understanding confirming the will of all parties to continue on the European path; and the resumption of media dialogue with their association of journalists.

While efforts are continuing to get the committee of inquiry up and running, results have been slow; these delays and the limited political dialogue between the parties raise doubts about their commitment to fully implement the 1 March 2013 agreement. I conveyed this message very clearly to Prime Minister Gruevski.

Serbia’s and Kosovo’s historic agreement has injected new momentum into the enlargement process. This is an opportunity that the region and other countries should not miss. The Serbia-Kosovo deal shows that, where there is political will, a solution can be found. As we know in the European Union, in such instances compromise can lead to greater rewards.


  Richard Howitt, on behalf of the S&D Group. – Mr President, once again I put before you the clear recommendation that accession negotiations for this country should start without further delay. However, this year – in response to the ethnic tensions last August as well as the political crisis of 24 December 2012 – I also want to re-emphasise some of the tough reality: that future progress towards Europe is jeopardised, that the democratic credibility of the country is in question, and that we cannot want the country to join the European Union more than its people themselves do. So, concerning the commission of inquiry, the memorandum of understanding and the dialogue for freedom of expression, I appeal to you to make substantive progress far beyond where you are today. I say the same concerning the name issue too.

Europe is rightly welcoming progress between Serbia and Kosovo. Those leaders had to show no less courage than what is required today between leaders in Athens and in Skopje. Indeed, I fear that only progress on the name issue can now keep hopes alive in June.

However, this Parliament is also asking clear questions of the European Council. Are you using the challenges of the country as a convenient excuse? Have you really considered what will happen if this country slides back towards conflict and fragmentation? Looking at the past year, does the European Council accept its own responsibilities resulting from the delay and rejection? Do you understand that when you are in a queue and find yourself continually pushed past, getting further and further from the front, then at some point you will walk away from the queue altogether?

My own report here in Parliament was postponed pending an agreement to end the political crisis. I now fear that the European Council may have to contemplate postponing its June decision – possibly a better outcome than yet another rejection. Indeed, by the end of this year I cannot predict whether this will be a country in which EU accession negotiations have begun, or one which may have lost its candidate status altogether. What I do know is that this country and its people deserve a chance.

Commissioner, I am proud that you asked Mr Buzek and me to broker that agreement on 1 March 2013 but, Mr President, when I reflect on that experience, I think most of all of the ordinary Macedonians who came up to us in the street, in corridors, on public transport, wishing us well and urging us to succeed. It is those hopes and aspirations of the people of the country which guide me most and which demand that the EU finds a way to help this country move forward.

(The speaker agreed to take a blue-card question under Rule 149(8))


  Bernd Posselt (PPE), Frage nach dem Verfahren der „blauen Karte“. – Herr Präsident! Ich war hier in Straßburg dabei, als für Mazedonien zur Zeit der letzten irischen Ratspräsidentschaft Präsident Boris Trajkovski den Beitrittsantrag überbracht hat. Das ist viele Jahre her. Können Sie sich vorstellen, dass jetzt Verhandlungen z. B. mit Serbien begonnen werden und Mazedonien aufgrund der Willkür zweier Nachbarländer weiter blockiert wird? Können wir so etwas akzeptieren, oder müssen wir nicht dagegen energisch einschreiten?


  Richard Howitt (S&D), blue-card answer. – I am on record, and I once again ask Parliament to say that the talks should start without delay and without condition. It is paragraph 1 of my resolution that I put before you. I say to the European Council that you must heed what the European Parliament says. Whether it is June or whether it is later, the vast majority of MEPs in this Chamber – from the left of centre, the right of centre, the centre – from the vast majority of Member States of the European Union support the consensus. We saw it in the Committee on Foreign Affairs. We will see it in this Parliament tomorrow. It is time our voice was heard too.


  Eduard Kukan, on behalf of the PPE Group. – Mr President, firstly congratulations to Mr Howitt on his good work and his engagement, which has resulted in a very good report. In today’s resolution, Parliament calls on the Council to open accession negotiations with the country without further delay. Why is this important? The accession process allows us to anchor the country in the process of intensive reforms and modernisation.

The process guarantees the implementation of European standards. Through this process it would also be easier to address issues which have been of concern to some Member States. It is through this process that we can help Macedonia to reform its judiciary, its public administration or to improve the situation of people belonging to minorities.

The Commission, in line with its commitment to the integration process, confirms that Macedonia is ready to start accession negotiations. The EU needs to show that it stands behind this commitment; it also needs to show that there is the European way to deal with problematic questions. Only such a position would make us a credible partner.

I agree that Macedonia is facing many problems. That is why I also call on political parties in Macedonia to contribute to the implementation of the 1 March agreement, especially on establishing a commission of inquiry into the events of 24 December, and for the joint support – by all parties – of Euro-Atlantic integration. The country also needs to keep working on improving inter-ethnic relations and relations with some of its neighbours.

Finally, I hope that progress achieved by the country and its long-term commitment to the integration process will be positively assessed by the Council, and that Macedonia will receive a date for starting the negotiations.


  Norica Nicolai, în numele grupului ALDE. – Dincolo de raportul echilibrat al colegului nostru Howitt, câteva întrebări merită puse astăzi în această dezbatere, pentru că Macedonia, alături de Turcia, reprezintă ţările care aşteaptă un semnal pozitiv de la Uniunea Europeană.

Se pare că Turcia va fi un eşec, şi probabil și Macedonia, dacă nu există voinţă. Voinţa politică trebuie demonstrată de aici, de la Bruxelles, pentru că ne cereţi întotdeauna mai multă Europă, dar, din păcate, nu faceţi foarte multe pentru a avea mai multă Europă şi ne lăsăm ghidaţi de politicile cumva unilaterale ale unor state membre, ceea ce nu este, din punctul meu de vedere, admisibil. Este vorba de o decizie politică care este vital să fie luată pentru Uniune. Pentru că, în vederea unui eşec al Parteneriatului estic, care probabil este previzibil, cred că şi un eşec al politicilor de extindere ar crea o imagine care nu ne-ar pune deloc într-o poziţie favorabilă în faţa cetăţenilor europeni din punctul de vedere al încrederii şi al creării coeziunii.

Domnule comisar, vorbeam de reforme - aţi mărturisit că se produc reforme! Toţi criticăm un anume comportament politic, dar n-aş vrea să folosim dublul standard: sunt ţări, state membre, în care comportamentele politice sunt departe de a fi cumva necesare şi concordante cu un standard democratic al Uniunii Europene. Important este, însă, să avem o gândire pozitivă, să nu mai folosim termeni care sunt cumva obstrucţionişti.

Eu cred că în Macedonia, ca şi în întreaga zonă, relaţiile etnice s-au normalizat, sunt cetăţeni care au dublă cetăţenie, pentru că această ţară permite dubla cetăţenie, ceea ce alţii nu tolerează. Nu ar trebui să mai vorbim despre ceea ce se cheamă antichizarea, un fenomen de recuperare a istoriei. Istoria este un bun de identitate culturală al fiecărui popor şi trebuie să respectăm acest lucru Macedoniei - că o facem mai mult sau mai bine sau mai rău, din punct de vedere estetic nu este la latitudinea noastră să judecăm, dar cert este că, din punctul nostru de vedere, al liberalilor europeni, este vitală începerea negocierilor şi susţinem acest lucru.


  Marije Cornelissen, on behalf of the Verts/ALE Group. – Mr President, I will address Mrs Creighton: we have now heard from Mr Howitt, Mr Posselt, Mr Kukan and Ms Nicolai, and I gladly join them. It is really high time that negotiations were opened. Do tell all your colleagues next time you see them – and I mean all of them.

The name issue must be either removed from the enlargement process or it must be resolved post-haste. Last year Greece offered a name with a geographical mention, while allowing Macedonian as an adjective. Let us all admit that this is really the only possible solution and let us call for this offer to be taken up.

Meanwhile, Macedonia has a lot to do internally. I am very glad the opposition and the coalition have come to an agreement, but parliamentary procedures obviously badly need revision. A lot of work also needs to be done on human rights, such as freedom of the press and LGBT rights. I think the authorities need to act very quickly now that the June Pride has been cancelled by the organisers because they felt too threatened. I hope something may be done to have a successful Pride soon.


  Charles Tannock, on behalf of the ECR Group. – Mr President, Macedonia suffers the dubious distinction of being the longest-standing EU candidate state not to have started accession negotiations. The deadlock has now lasted eight years, and it must be extremely galling for the government in Skopje to see Croatia, which gained that status only a year before Macedonia in 2004, set to join the European Union in less than six weeks’ time while Skopje remains totally unable to move on and has now even been overtaken by Montenegro.

It is perhaps not helpful to point the finger of blame too much on this point, but my group would urge Greek Government movement on the interminable name issue. There have been encouraging signs from Athens in recent months, but much more needs now to be done to see practical steps taken which will be acceptable to both sides. To my mind it would be nothing short of absurd for Macedonia if the issue of the country’s name choice prevented it from realising its European ambitions.

There have been worrying developments recently in Macedonia in its bilateral relationship with Bulgaria. There are delicate issues to be addressed here for sure, particularly regarding the issue of the handing out of Bulgarian nationality, but I would urge the Bulgarians to offer the hand of friendship to their Macedonian neighbours and to support their quest for EU membership which they so much desire.

I therefore welcome Richard Hewitt’s sensitive and comprehensive 2012 progress report and commend his work in helping to break the domestic political deadlock in Skopje earlier this year.

I encourage all colleagues in this chamber to continue reaching out to Macedonia, which is a stable but highly-challenged democracy trying to secure a prosperous future for its diverse peoples by anchoring its future in Euro-Atlantic structures.


  Νικόλαος Σαλαβράκος, εξ ονόματος της ομάδας EFD. – Κύριε Πρόεδρε, εγώ θα στεναχωρήσω τον κύριο Howitt διότι πιστεύω ότι η έκθεσή του περιλαμβάνει ανακριβή στοιχεία και δεν απεικονίζει την πραγματική κατάσταση της FYROM. Οι επισημάνσεις, τόσο του κυρίου Howitt όσο και του κυρίου Füle στην ανάπτυξη απόψεων που έκαναν προηγουμένως ενώπιόν σας, ανατρέπουν την έκθεση. Η όλη μεθόδευση αναβολών για την ψήφιση της έκθεσης προκειμένου, με παρέμβαση του κυρίου Howitt και του κυρίου Füle, να επιλυθεί το πρόβλημα της αντιδημοκρατικής περιόδου από τις 24 Δεκεμβρίου έως και τον Μάρτιο, αποδεικνύει ότι, τόσο από άποψη ουσίας όσο και από άποψη μεθοδολογίας, η έκθεση κρύβει τα προβλήματα κάτω από το χαλί. Χρειάζονται περαιτέρω προσπάθειες από την κυβέρνηση της FYROM για την επίτευξη των κριτηρίων. Η έναρξη των διαπραγματεύσεων δεν εξαρτάται μόνο από τις γειτονικές χώρες, όπως η Ελλάδα και η Βουλγαρία, αλλά κυρίως από την ίδια την κυβέρνηση της χώρας αυτής που πρέπει να πετύχει μείωση του εθνικισμού και των προκλητικών πράξεων και δηλώσεων σε μια προσπάθεια να εξευρεθεί συμφωνία σε πνεύμα καλής γειτονίας. Τελικά, παρά τις προθέσεις της, η έκθεση δεν βοηθά κανέναν και δεν λύνει κανένα πρόβλημα, διότι μόνον η αλήθεια λύνει τα προβλήματα. Υποθέτω ότι η έκθεση απεικονίζει την αλήθεια του κυρίου Howitt - την υποκειμενική του αλήθεια, και θα του απαντήσω με μία φράση του Πιραντέλο: «έτσι είναι αν έτσι νομίζετε». Δεν είναι όμως έτσι!


  Νικόλαος Χουντής, εξ ονόματος της ομάδας GUE/NGL. – Κύριε Πρόεδρε, έχω τρεις παρατηρήσεις για την έκθεση για την FYROM. Παρατήρηση πρώτη: η έκθεση εξακολουθεί να θεωρεί το θέμα του ονόματος ως διμερές πρόβλημα. Το πρόβλημα είναι διεθνές και βρίσκεται στη διαδικασία επίλυσής του στο πλαίσιο του ΟΗΕ. Η κυβέρνηση της FYROM επομένως πρέπει να αποφεύγει πρακτικές που επιδεινώνουν το πρόβλημα και πρέπει να συμβάλει στην αντιμετώπιση του, γεγονός που αποτελεί προϋπόθεση για τις ενταξιακές διαδικασίες διότι υπηρετεί την αρχή της καλής γειτονίας. Παρατήρηση δεύτερη: η έκθεση δεν καταγράφει με την απαραίτητη αυστηρότητα τα πολιτικά γεγονότα και την πολιτική κατάσταση, και συγκεκριμένα τα γεγονότα του Δεκεμβρίου του 2012. Οι πολιτικές δυνάμεις της FYROM όμως πρέπει να πραγματοποιήσουν σημαντικά βήματα προς την κατεύθυνση της δημοκρατίας και της ομαλής λειτουργίας του κράτους. Παρατήρηση τρίτη: η έκθεση ούτε αναφέρεται στα αίτια των μεγάλων οικονομικών και κοινωνικών προβλημάτων - στην τεράστια ανεργία, ειδικά στην ανεργία των νέων και ειδικά στην ανεργία των γυναικών - ούτε αναλύει το πρόβλημα την στιγμή που εκείνες οι πολιτικές που έχουν οδηγήσει σε αυτά τα αποτελέσματα είναι υποχρεωτικές λόγω των νεοφιλελεύθερων κατευθύνσεων της Ευρωπαϊκής Ένωσης, γεγονός που δεν μπορεί παρά να οξύνει τα προβλήματα.


  Андрей Ковачев (PPE). - Г-н Председател, уважаеми колеги, уважаеми колеги от Събранието на Македония, първо искам да кажа на г-н Поселт и на тези, които направиха внушенията, че България иска да блокира Македония, това е абсолютно неправилно – ние не искаме в България да блокираме нашите сестри и братя от Вардара.

Отново Европейският парламент ще даде един искрен сигнал за желанието на македонските граждани да станат и европейски граждани, независимо от тяхната етническа и верска принадлежност; колкото може по-бързо, толкова по-добре. В това не може да имаме никакво съмнение, но и управляващите, медиите и академичният елит на Македония трябва да извървят своя европейски път. Само с думи не става, уважаеми колеги от Вардар.

Ако наистина искате македонските граждани да имат европейско бъдеще, преосмислете Вашата политика относно налагането на национална идентичност, базирана на манипулиране на историята на съседни държави.

Не търсете реципрочност там ,където няма как да има реципрочност, базирана на манипулиране на историята!

Приемете протегната ръка и нека подпишем договора за добросъседство. Бяхме на крачка от това подписване, българският министър-председател посети специално за това Скопие. Не може да не сме разочаровани, че не успяхме. На нас ни трябват положителни сигнали.

Друг пример: България повече от 7 години се опитва да получи разрешение за възстановяване на някои от своите военни гробища и паметници на територията на Македония, като например взривения гроб на полковник Каварналиев, но отговор, въпреки международните спогодби, от които се очаква да има разрешение за това нещо, няма от Македония.

Престъпление и безотговорност е, г-н Груевски, да се възпитават младите поколения на Балканите в заблуда и омраза към най-близките си. Това не е пътят към помирение и европейско бъдеще.

Желая от сърце преодоляване на сенките от миналото и се надявам наистина в скоро време да пожелаем "Добре дошли" в Европа на всички наши братя и сестри от Вардар.


  Libor Rouček (S&D). - Mr President, Macedonia had a very difficult start to 2013. There was a political crisis and incidents of inter-ethnic tensions but, as on many occasions in the past, the country has overcome to a large extent many of these problems and is working to restore its democratic credibility.

A cross-party agreement was reached, a boycott of local elections was averted and the Parliament is functioning again. I think the Commission delivered quite a positive report. Now it is time for the EU to make good on its commitment. After being a candidate for four years, Macedonia should be granted a date for the opening of the negotiations. This is in the interest of the EU countries, it is in the interest of Macedonia and its citizens and above all it is in the interest of the neighbouring countries.


  Jorgo Chatzimarkakis (ALDE). - Mr President, as Co-Chair of the Joint Parliamentary Committee (JPC) of the European Parliament and the Sobranie, let me congratulate you on yet another positive report. For the first time our colleagues from Skopje are here in Strasbourg to attend the 11th JPC at the moment and to follow this debate on Richard Howitt’s report. I would like to welcome especially my Co-Chair Kenan Hasipi.

Last December, only two months after the positive Commission progress report, we experienced a major political crisis in the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia. The opposition was kicked out of the plenary, journalists had been expelled previously, and voting took place without their presence.

The whole political process was disrupted due to parliamentary blocking for many weeks. We have been following the developments very anxiously in Brussels and in Europe, and the EU has made tremendous efforts to act as a mediator between the parties.

On 1 March 2013, an agreement was achieved thanks to an EU mission by Parliament’s former President Jerzy Buzek, Richard Howitt and Commissioner Füle. Congratulations, especially to the Commissioner for his commitment and his tough tone, which led to the 1 March agreement and calmed the situation.

Our rapporteur Mr Howitt postponed the vote on his report as he feared that the vote could turn out negatively for the country. I respect his decision. Moreover, the JPC was also postponed. This was a sign of mutual respect. Parliament, I think, and our colleagues were extremely tolerant in allowing us to use this time-out instrument, but this measure can only be an exceptional approach. Let us continue to work hard, keeping the country on the European track. It is in our common interest.


  Paweł Robert Kowal (ECR). - Panie Przewodniczący! Mam wrażenie, że część debat wygląda tu zawsze tak samo. Niektórzy w tej izbie uważają, że umowa stowarzyszeniowa, negocjacje, jakiś prawny gest ze strony Unii wobec naszych partnerów to taki prezent na święta albo imieniny. Inni rozumieją, że to najlepszy instrument do zmian. Jeśli chcemy, by społeczeństwa się modernizowały; by Europa się rozwijała; by ludzie podróżowali i się ze sobą kontaktowali; jeżeli rozumiemy, że to jest najlepszy sposób porozumienia, to musimy jasno w takich sytuacjach mówić: „Tak, chcemy otwarcia negocjacji!”, ponieważ nastąpiły zmiany w systemie sądownictwa w Macedonii, ponieważ podpisano porozumienie, bo zaangażowani w to byli komisarz Füle, przewodniczący Buzek, pan Howitt. Jest tysiąc powodów, żeby to zrobić, a każda inna postawa jest tak naprawdę postawą pewnego fałszu, ponieważ za nią nie kryją się pozytywne chęci – za nią kryje się chęć domykania Europy, która nam wszystkim się kiedyś odbije czkawką.


  Μαριέττα Γιαννάκου (PPE). - Κύριε Πρόεδρε, ακούσαμε την Προεδρία, τον Επίτροπο και τον εισηγητή. Πολύ συγκεκριμένα προβλήματα εξακολουθούν να υφίστανται, προβλήματα που αφορούν στις σχέσεις καλής γειτονίας της χώρας αυτής με τις άλλες χώρες δίπλα της. Εξακολουθεί να υπάρχει μία υπερβολική τάση αρχαιοποίησης της σημερινής πολιτικής και εξακολουθεί να υπάρχει μία εμμονή σε καταστάσεις που δεν ανταποκρίνονται στην αλήθεια και που θα μπορούσαν, στο μέλλον, να δημιουργήσουν εντάσεις. Η υπόθεση του ονόματος δεν προέκυψε διότι κάποιος είναι ιδιοκτήτης ενός ονόματος. Προέκυψε διότι το όνομα αποτελεί, κυρίως μαζί με τον χαρακτηρισμό της ταυτότητας και της γλώσσας, τη βάση για μια συνεχιζόμενη προπαγάνδα, η οποία θίγει τις χώρες οι οποίες βρίσκονται δίπλα, μια προπαγάνδα που γίνεται είτε με χάρτες που συνιστούν πρόκληση, είτε με την επιλογή του τίτλου του κυβερνώντος κόμματος που κάνει λόγο για την απελευθέρωση της Μακεδονίας, είτε με άλλες ενέργειες, με τεράστια αγάλματα και με τη δήθεν διακόσμηση της πρωτεύουσας της χώρας. Όλα αυτά συντείνουν σε ένα πράγμα, στην ένταση της προπαγάνδας και των αντεγκλήσεων σε περίπτωση που η χώρα γίνει μέλος χωρίς να λυθεί το πρόβλημα του ονόματος. Είναι εγκληματική η στάση της κυβέρνησης της χώρας αυτής, η οποία προσπαθεί να συνηθίσει τους νέους της χώρας σε καταστάσεις που πραγματικά δεν υπάρχουν και στην αρχαιοποίηση της σημερινής πολιτικής, μιας πολιτικής που πρέπει να είναι πολιτική όχι μόνο καλής γειτονίας και συνεργασίας αλλά στενής σύνδεσης.


  Μαρία-Ελένη Κοππά (S&D). - Κύριε Πρόεδρε, η πολιτική κρίση του περασμένου Δεκεμβρίου προκαλεί εύλογα ερωτηματικά για την κατάσταση της δημοκρατίας στην Πρώην Γιουγκοσλαβική Δημοκρατία της Μακεδονίας. Τα προβλήματα εξακολουθούν να υφίστανται παρά την πολιτική συμφωνία της 1ης Μαρτίου ανάμεσα στα κόμματα. Ανεξάρτητα από το τι επιθυμούν ορισμένοι, η πραγματικότητα είναι ότι η χώρα δεν είναι έτοιμη να ξεκινήσει διαπραγματεύσεις με την Ευρωπαϊκή Ένωση. Δεν είναι μόνο η διαφορά με την Ελλάδα το πρόβλημα. Η απουσία ουσιαστικής δημοκρατίας, η έλλειψη ελευθερίας του λόγου, οι κακές σχέσεις με τους γείτονες και ο συνεχιζόμενος αλυτρωτισμός, με λόγια και έργα, είναι μερικά από τα πολύ σημαντικά προβλήματα που η χώρα δεν έχει λύσει. Σε σχέση με το ζήτημα του ονόματος, επιθυμώ να τονίσω ότι η Ελλάδα έχει κάνει πολλά βήματα και έχει δείξει έμπρακτα την επιθυμία της για επίλυση του χρονίζοντος αυτού προβλήματος. Η ιστορική συμφωνία μεταξύ Βελιγραδίου και Πρίστινας αποδεικνύει ότι μπορούν να υπάρξουν λύσεις σε δύσκολα θέματα εφόσον υπάρχει καλή θέληση και επικρατεί κοινή λογική. Η κυβέρνηση των Σκοπίων πρέπει να αντιμετωπίσει επιτέλους ρεαλιστικά την πραγματικότητα και να μην χάσει μία ακόμη ευκαιρία.


  Jelko Kacin (ALDE). - Mr President, it is high time that Macedonian leaders woke up to the fact that unblocking the integration process of the country rests almost solely upon them. They need to do their utmost to secure a European future for their country by reaching a compromise on the name issue with Greece. Endless stories about the ancient past will not make Macedonians’ lives better now or in the future.

Macedonia’s first neighbours, Serbia and Kosovo, reached a historic deal in April which set the foundations for the normalisation of their relations. Prime Ministers Dačić and Thaçi did not dodge their responsibility in the direct high-level talks.

Prime Minister Gruevski and his Greek interlocutors have a lot to learn from this episode. Macedonia badly needs to continue its Euro-Atlantic integration process in order to kick-start economic recovery and regain the trust of foreign investors. The most pressing concerns in the country are the alarming state of media freedom and democratic dialogue between the ruling coalition and the opposition. At the same time, Macedonian leaders need to invest much more in improving inter-ethnic relations in the country, as the last Helsinki report indicates that the authorities might be involved in a cover-up of the rising number of crimes inspired by ethnic or religious hatred.


  Doris Pack (PPE). - Herr Präsident, meine lieben Kolleginnen und Kollegen! Mazedonien wartet seit 2005 auf den Beginn von Verhandlungen mit der Europäischen Union. Inzwischen steht Kroatien vor dem Beitritt, Montenegro verhandelt, und Mazedonien wird immer wieder gehindert auf seinem Weg zur Europäischen Union. Und es ist nicht so, wie ich gerade gehört habe, dass es nicht fertig wäre, dass es nicht bereit wäre, dass es nicht die Bedingungen erfüllt. Es wurde heute von Herrn Füle bestätigt, es wurde heute von Frau Creighton bestätigt.

Wenn sich in den letzten Jahren in Mazedonien leider nationalistische Tendenzen bemerkbar machten, dann ist das auch nicht auszuschließen; und es ist auch nicht auszuschließen, dass also deswegen auch interethnische Spannungen wieder aufflammen könnten. Das passiert aber nur, weil die Probleme aus dem Nachbarland immer wieder überschwappen. Das liegt an dem seit 20 Jahren immer zu hörende Nein in allen Fragen, vor allen Dingen wegen des Namens. Das kann doch einfach keine Sache sein, die wir dulden können. Es ist auch nicht eine Frage der UNO, ob der Name jetzt genannt wird oder nicht. Es ist eine Frage des Nachbarlandes, das in der UNO veranlasst hat, dass dieser Name nicht gebraucht wird. Das muss man einfach einmal sagen. Und die Tatsache des Namens hat das Land daran gehindert, in die NATO einzutreten, es hat es gehindert, die Verhandlungen mit der EU aufzunehmen. All das sind Hinderungen, die wir eigentlich nicht akzeptieren sollten, aber wir können nichts daran ändern. Es kann nur einer etwas daran ändern: das Nachbarland.

Ich appelliere natürlich auch an die mazedonische Regierung, allen nationalistischen Tendenzen zu entsagen und keinen Anlass zu Reaktionen aus den beiden Nachbarländern zu geben. Aber alle drei müssen abrüsten! Man kann nicht immer nur auf die Geschichte zurückblicken, man muss in die Zukunft gehen. Deswegen hoffe ich sehr, dass die griechische Regierung die Möglichkeiten findet, den Namen jetzt endlich zu akzeptieren oder einen akzeptablen Namen zu finden. Ein kleines friedliches Nachbarland kann weder Bulgarien noch Griechenland zum Schaden gereichen. Es kann uns allen nur gelingen.


(Die Rednerin ist damit einverstanden, eine Frage nach dem Verfahren der „blauen Karte“ gemäß Artikel 149 Absatz 8 der Geschäftsordnung zu beantworten.)




  Νικόλαος Σαλαβράκος (EFD), ερώτηση με γαλάζια κάρτα. – Κυρία Pack, υπενθυμίζω, πρώτον, ότι η Ελλάδα ήταν το δέκατο μέλος της Ευρωπαϊκής Ένωσης. Η Ένωση έχει 27 μέλη. Σε καμία περίπτωση διεύρυνσης η Ελλάδα δεν έφερε αντίρρηση. Αναρωτιέστε ή σας κάνει αυτό να αναρωτηθείτε ποίος είναι ο λόγος που η Ελλάδα αρνείται; Δεύτερον, στα είκοσι χρόνια που έχουν περάσει από την ίδρυση του κράτους των Σκοπίων, έχουν αλλάξει στην Ελλάδα επτά κυβερνήσεις διαφορετικών πολιτικών χρωμάτων. Στα Σκόπια εξακολουθεί να κυβερνά το VMRO, το εθνικιστικό κόμμα. Αναρωτιέστε άραγε γιατί;


  Doris Pack (PPE), Antwort auf eine Frage nach dem Verfahren der „blauen Karte“. – Lieber Herr Kollege, das muss ich ja nur Sie fragen. Sie sind doch Grieche! Da muss sich Griechenland fragen, warum das jetzt so ist. Die anderen Länder, die beigetreten sind, hatten kein Nachbarland Griechenland.

(Die Rednerin ist damit einverstanden, eine weitere Frage nach dem Verfahren der „blauen Karte“ gemäß Artikel 149 Absatz 8 der Geschäftsordnung zu beantworten.)


  Jelko Kacin (ALDE), Vprašanje, postavljeno z dvigom modrega kartončka. – Imamo dve možnosti: ali čakamo na to, da se stvari uredijo same po sebi, in sedem let se že niso uredile, ali pa pozovemo obe strani, oba premierja, da dosežeta dogovor, kompromis, in se zgledujeta po Srbiji in Kosovu in celotno regijo popeljeta v prihodnost. Iz prekeklosti, iz antike, v prihodnost.

Se strinjamo o tem ali ne? Bomo pozvali gospoda Gruevskega, da stori vse, kar je v njegovi moči, da se doseže preboj, napredek in olajšanje za Makedonijo in vse sosede?


  Doris Pack (PPE), Antwort auf eine Frage nach dem Verfahren der „blauen Karte“. – Ich stimme Ihnen vollkommen zu. Es ist viel einfacher für die beiden Premierminister aus Mazedonien und aus Griechenland, eine Möglichkeit der Zusammenarbeit zu finden, als es für Priština und Belgrad war. Also, wenn die es geschafft haben, dann würde ich doch sagen, muss der Mitgliedstaat Griechenland die Möglichkeit haben, dem Nichtmitgliedstaat Mazedonien keine Steine in den Weg zu legen und zu helfen, dass dieses kleine Land auch in die Europäische Union kommt.


  Tunne Kelam (PPE). - Madam President, this is the fourth year that the Council has not been able to follow the Commission’s recommendation and open accession negotiations with Macedonia. I think this is also about the credibility of the European Union living up to is own high ideals of a united European family.

That is why we also call in this report for the Commission to prepare an assessment of the costs of non-enlargement, because there are major risks for a nation that has mobilised itself over several years to satisfy the criteria of the EU and has made progress in 75% of policy areas and then finds itself left aside time and time again. This is at a time when everyone is concerned about the decrease of popular support for the EU. The EU’s inability to reach a consensus about a new member can demobilise support where it is still high.

While Macedonia has succeeded in maintaining macroeconomic stability, the internal political stability has become shaky and we commend the Commissioner, the rapporteur and Mr Buzek in helping to achieve a national agreement and restore political life. Much remains to be done, but it is important for all stakeholders to realise that only Macedonia’s membership of the EU will provide the best conditions to solve the different historic and cultural problems to the mutual satisfaction of all interested parties.

The current year will be decisive for a breakthrough. Tomorrow will send a strong message that Parliament is not prepared for further delays. Macedonia clearly deserves its chance.


  Milan Zver (PPE). - Prvič, poročilo Evropske komisije predstavlja dejstva o Makedoniji. Drugič, ta dejstva govorijo v prid Makedonije, in tretjič, na teh dejstvih mora temeljiti odločitev Evropske unije o uradnem začetku pristopnih pogajanj.

Imamo kakšne druge možnosti? Jaz sem prepričan, drage kolegice in kolegi, da ne. Tudi zato, ker smo odgovorni za ugled evropskih institucij in ker nekorektne odločitve povzročajo padanje ugleda Evropske unije.

Vprašati se tudi moramo, kako se počutijo evropsko usmerjeni državljani Makedonije, ko že sedem let dobiva obljube od Evropske unije, ko pa pride čas za odločitev, pa Evropska unija tega ne stori.

Makedosnka vlada uspešno uresničuje program reform in tudi izpolnjevanje kopenhagenskih kriterijev za članstvo v Evropski uniji. Gre za uspešno državo, ki ne prosi vbogajme. Mimogrede, ima najnižji javni dolg v Evropi.

Pričetek pristopnih pogajanj ni potreben le za Makedonijo, ampak tudi za širšo regijo in tudi za Evropsko unijo. Trajni mir na Balkanu bo mogoč šele na podlagi regionalne sprave, le v združeni Evropi.

Naj še spomnim, da je tudi Evropska komisija sprejela strategijo, po kateri bilateralna vprašanja ne smejo bremeniti pristopnega procesa. Še enkrat, na tej točki sta na preizkušnji kredibilnost in verodostojnost evropskih institucij.


  György Schöpflin (PPE). - Madam President, Mr Howitt’s report is very cogent. A fair number of countries have actually signed agreements with Macedonia, and this is the name that they will use when referring to the state in question. Hungary is among them. Of course, in the spirit of democracy, if others wish to use the idiosyncratic neologism FYROM, they should be free to do so.

The name dispute, however, is only a symptom of a much deeper problem. Greece has yet again indicated that it will veto the opening of negotiations with the EU, asserting that Macedonia’s road to Europe must lie through Greece. Macedonia, not surprisingly, feels frustrated. This has led the government to launch a process of creating a pedigree for the country by giving it maximal antiquity, converting classical heroes like Alexander the Great into proto-Macedonians. A little bizarre, you might think, but the construction of this pedigree is seen as a mode of exclusion by Macedonia’s Albanian minority, and that has resulted in growing tensions between the Slavophone and Albanian communities. On top of that, there are deep divisions within the communities as well. This has not helped the emergence of a stable democratic culture.

Overall it is hard to avoid the conclusion that the long delay in the opening of the negotiations with the European Union has played its part in the tensions that have beset Macedonia, so it really is time to start the negotiations.


Διαδικασία Catch-the-Eye


  Erik Bánki (PPE). - Öröm számomra, hogy az elmúlt évben jelentősen felgyorsultak azok a folyamatok Macedóniában, melyek az ország európai uniós csatlakozását előkészítő tárgyalások megindításához vezethetnek. Fontos reformfolyamatok indultak el, illetve gyorsultak fel az elmúlt időszakban. Javult a szomszédos országgal fenntartott kapcsolatrendszere is – elsősorban Bulgáriára és Görögországra gondolok –, s úgy tűnik, hogy az ország névhasználatának kérdése is rendeződhet az ENSZ égisze alatt folytatott tárgyalásoknak köszönhetően.

Vannak azonban problémák is: elsősorban az elmúlt félév belpolitikai feszültségeire gondolok, de említhetném az elmúlt 15 évben felgyorsult elvándorlás kérdését is, hiszen a lakosság 10%-a hagyta el az országot ebben az időszakban. Nem kérdés – magyar képviselőként pedig különösen így gondolom –, az Európai Unió számára rendkívül fontos a délkeleti térség stabilitása és felzárkóztatása. Mielőbb meg kell indítani a csatlakozáshoz vezető tárgyalásokat és segítenünk kell Macedóniát abban, hogy felkészültté váljon az európai uniós csatlakozásra.


  Γεώργιος Τούσσας (GUE/NGL). - Κυρία Πρόεδρε, όσα περιέχονται στην έκθεση προόδου του 2012 για την Πρώην Γιουγκοσλαβική Δημοκρατία της Μακεδονίας, κατατείνουν στην ένταση της εκμετάλλευσης των εργαζομένων και των πλουτοπαραγωγικών πηγών της Πρώην Γιουγκοσλαβικής Δημοκρατίας της Μακεδονίας αλλά και των χωρών της ευρύτερης περιοχής από τους μονοπωλιακούς ομίλους. Η έκθεση χαιρετίζει την απαράδεκτη απόφαση της κυβέρνησης της Πρώην Γιουγκοσλαβικής Δημοκρατίας της Μακεδονίας να εντάξει τις στρατιωτικές της δυνάμεις στις κατοχικές δυνάμεις της Ευρωπαϊκής Ένωσης στη Βοσνία-Ερζεγοβίνη και στους ιμπεριαλιστικούς σχεδιασμούς και στις επεμβάσεις της Ευρωπαϊκής Ένωσης. Αναδεικνύει την Ευρωπαϊκή Ένωση σε επιδιαιτητή των διεθνών διαφορών με βάση τα ιμπεριαλιστικά της συμφέροντα. Επιδίδεται σε χυδαίο αντικομμουνισμό, ζητάει ουσιαστικά την ποινικοποίηση της κομμουνιστικής ιδεολογίας και το κυνήγι μαγισσών. Δίνει έδαφος στον εθνικισμό, στο εθνοτικό μίσος και φανατισμό στο εσωτερικό της Πρώην Γιουγκοσλαβικής Δημοκρατίας της Μακεδονίας και με τις γειτονικές χώρες. Το Κομμουνιστικό Κόμμα Ελλάδας είναι αντίθετο στην ένταξη της Πρώην Γιουγκοσλαβικής Δημοκρατίας της Μακεδονίας στην Ευρωπαϊκή Ένωση. Η λύση για την ειρήνη και την ασφάλεια των λαών δεν βρίσκεται σε ενδιάμεσες συμφωνίες υπό τη χειραγώγηση των ιμπεριαλιστικών δυνάμεων Ευρωπαϊκής Ένωσης - ΗΠΑ - ΝΑΤΟ, ούτε στις διαβουλεύσεις μέσα στους ιμπεριαλιστικούς οργανισμούς και στα Δικαστήρια. Η λύση βρίσκεται στην κοινή αντιμονοπωλιακή αντικαπιταλιστική πάλη των λαών με αδιαπραγμάτευτο το δικαίωμα των λαών να καθορίζουν οι ίδιοι το μέλλον τους.

(Ο ομιλητής δέχεται να απαντήσει σε ερώτηση με γαλάζια κάρτα (άρθρο 149 παράγραφος 8 του Κανονισμού))


  Reinhard Bütikofer (Verts/ALE), blue-card question. – Are you saying that the Greek Communist Party is opposing the entry of Macedonia into the EU because you want to protect Macedonians from imperialist exploitation?


  Γεώργιος Τούσσας (GUE/NGL), απάντηση σε ερώτηση με γαλάζια κάρτα. – O λαός δεν χρειάζεται προστάτες από κανένα κράτος της Ευρωπαϊκής Ένωσης και πολύ λιγότερο από την Ελλάδα. Ο λαός θα αποφασίσει και θα κάνει τις επιλογές του. Αλλά η κατάσταση είναι ιδιαίτερα ανησυχητική και επιτρέψτε μου να σας συστήσω να μελετήσετε με πολύ μεγάλη προσοχή τις παραγράφους 12, 16, 17 και 18, διότι ναρκοθετείται το εσωτερικό της Πρώην Γιουγκοσλαβικής Δημοκρατίας της Μακεδονίας - όχι τα σύνορά της, οι σχέσεις της με την Ελλάδα και με τις άλλες όμορες χώρες, αλλά το εσωτερικό της. Και αυτό θα το δείτε στο μέλλον!


  László Tőkés (PPE). - Macedónia európai integrációja ügyében mind az ország, mind az Unió számára egyre tarthatatlanabb a helyzet. Amint a jelentésből is kitűnik, a volt jugoszláv tagállam az iránta támasztott feltételeket és elvárásokat teljesítette. Mire várunk még? Oly hosszú és értelmetlen halogatás nyomán Macedónia mikor kap már végre dátumot a csatlakozási tárgyalások elkezdéséhez?

A helyzet annál is inkább tarthatatlan, mivel – úgy gondolom – nemcsak a tagjelölt országnak, hanem az Uniónak is vannak vele szemben kötelezettségei. Többszörös halasztás és méltánytalan mellőzés után végre világos és tiszta európai pályát kell szabnunk Macedóniának!

A Balkán sokat szenvedett térség. Közös érdekünk, hogy ezt a régiót Európához csatoljuk. Ne nézzük tétlenül, hogy esetleg mások próbálják befolyási körükbe vonni. Macedóniával még az idén el kell kezdeni a csatlakozási tárgyalásokat!


  Γεώργιος Κουμουτσάκος (PPE). - Κυρία Πρόεδρε, δύο είναι οι στόχοι όλων μας εδώ. Πρώτον, να προχωρήσει η ενταξιακή διαδικασία της Πρώην Γιουγκοσλαβικής Δημοκρατίας της Μακεδονίας και δεύτερον, να λυθεί οριστικά και με έναν αμοιβαία αποδεκτό τρόπο ένα ζήτημα σχέσεων καλής γειτονίας, δηλαδή το ζήτημα της ονομασίας. Για να πετύχουμε όμως αυτούς τους δύο στόχους, δεν πρέπει να βάλουμε το κάρο μπροστά από το άλογο! Κι όμως αυτό προτείνεται από πολλούς εδώ, να ξεκινήσει πρώτα η ενταξιακή διαδικασία και μετά να λυθεί το ζήτημα. Πρόκειται για μία απολύτως λανθασμένη προσέγγιση. Το επιβεβαιώνει το παρελθόν με κατηγορηματικό τρόπο, διότι, όταν συμφώνησε η Ελλάδα να δοθεί καθεστώς υποψήφιας χώρας στα Σκόπια, η κυβέρνηση των Σκοπίων όχι μόνο δεν υιοθέτησε πιο εποικοδομητική στάση, αλλά αντίθετα την σκλήρυνε. Όταν συμφωνήσαμε να απελευθερωθεί το θέμα της βίζας και να θεωρούνται ελεύθερα τα διαβατήρια, πάλι η θέση των Σκοπίων αντί να γίνει πιο εποικοδομητική και πιο μετριοπαθής έγινε πιο σκληρή. Το παρελθόν δείχνει λοιπόν πέραν πάσης αμφιβολίας ότι η σωστή λύση είναι να λυθεί πρώτα το ζήτημα της ονομασίας και μετά να ξεκινήσει η ενταξιακή διαδικασία, διότι αλλιώς το ζήτημα θα παραμείνει άλυτο στο διηνεκές.

(Ο ομιλητής δέχεται να απαντήσει σε ερώτηση με γαλάζια κάρτα (άρθρο 149 παράγραφος 8 του Κανονισμού))


  Marije Cornelissen (Verts/ALE), blue-card question. – There is nothing that says that a name issue needs to be resolved before accession negotiations are opened. I feel that it is not wise to get into a conflict in the EU at the last moment, so this is why the report states that the name issue should be resolved before the final decision on accession. However, that is a long time from now, and at present you are just stopping reforms that are badly needed. You are stopping a process that is really good for Macedonian citizens and in general.

What is your reaction?


  Γεώργιος Κουμουτσάκος (PPE), απάντηση σε ερώτηση με γαλάζια κάρτα. – Θέλω να πω ότι πρέπει να δώσουμε κίνητρα στην κυβέρνηση των Σκοπίων για να υιοθετήσει εποικοδομητική στάση στη διαδικασία των διαπραγματεύσεων. Όλη η ιστορία όμως έχει αποδείξει ότι δεν υπάρχει κανένα κίνητρο που θα τους πείσει να αλλάξουν θέση εάν ξεκινήσουν ενταξιακές διαπραγματεύσεις. Συμφωνώ κι εγώ μαζί σας και θέλω να γίνει αυτή η χώρα μέλος της Ευρωπαϊκής Ένωσης, αλλά δεν μπορεί η ένταξη να γίνει σε σαθρά θεμέλια που θα προκαλέσουν μεγαλύτερα προβλήματα από αυτά που μπορεί να λύσει. Εμείς θέλουμε να ενταχθούν αλλά σας το ξαναλέω ότι, αν όλοι συμφωνείτε ότι πρέπει να δοθεί λύση στο ζήτημα της ονομασίας, η λύση πρέπει να προηγηθεί της έναρξης των ενταξιακών διαπραγματεύσεων, διότι ο κύριος Gruevski έχει δείξει ότι δεν πρόκειται να κάνει κανένα βήμα συμβιβασμού.


(Τέλος παρεμβάσεων με τη διαδικασία Catch-the-Eye)


  Štefan Füle, Member of the Commission. − Madam President, let me thank you for this substantial debate, which demonstrated the high level of attention and support of this House towards the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia.

Let me start where the honourable Member has just ended. You need two to tango: that is how it works. Number one.

Number two: you are saying it is completely wrong to open accession negotiations without solving the name issue.

You are saying that the Commission is completely wrong. You are saying I am completely wrong. Let me argue that I am not completely wrong. If we agree that the status quo is unsustainable; if we agree that the conditions need to be created for the parties to move forward, and if at the same time we agree – because no one is questioning this – that the name issue needs to be solved and that the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia could hardly become a European Union Member State without addressing this issue, then this actually gives us more opportunities than solving the name issue before the opening of accession negotiations.

In fact, if you look at the Commission’s October progress report, the Commission was absolutely clear there. Let us open accession negotiations. That in itself would generate a new momentum, in the framework of which we will be able to address the name issue.

We also made it clear in our progress report that, with the enlargement process drawing on the lessons learnt about the accession process being streamlined and actually more and more in the hands of the Member States, we could, through the negotiating framework, provide the Member States – not just one Member State, but all Member States – with a guarantee that we might (and again I am just speculating here) start the screening process, which takes a sufficiently long period of time within which there will be an environment more conducive to addressing the name issue, and we could make it clear in that negotiating framework that we will not move towards the second stage of the accession negotiations – which means opening various chapters – unless the name issue has been solved.

I was, however, completely wrong to make this suggestion to my College, to my colleagues in the Commission. All of them have agreed with me on this issue.

On 1 March 2013 I went with two very good friends, Members of the European Parliament (Mr Howitt and Mr Buzek), to Skopje, where we facilitated an agreement to solve the political crisis.

In June the Council will decide whether to accept the Commission’s recommendation to open accession negotiations. For the Council to take a positive decision, the country must demonstrate the necessary political will. This implies implementation of the political agreement of 1 March and continued efforts to improve neighbourly relations.

On the other hand – and let me stress this – it is also necessary that the country’s level of preparedness and the reform efforts that have been made over the past year are judged objectively and fairly.


  Lucinda Creighton, President-in-Office of the Council. − Madam President, I would like to thank Members for the very good debate in which you have participated this evening. I would like to conclude the discussion by welcoming the very significant progress which has been achieved by the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia to date. I think it is appropriate that we acknowledge that the effort is difficult, that the reforms are not easy, and that the authorities, the government and the people have to work extremely hard, so I am very impressed. During the Irish Presidency I have had a lot of contact with my counterpart over the last few months and we have to acknowledge the progress made.

It has, of course, been beneficial. It has brought about democratic and economic transformation for the country, and that is a good thing. I hope we will see a lot more of that in the future. I am confident that the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia will make further efforts during the rest of this year to achieve further important reforms. I should say that it continues to be a priority and stated objective of the Irish Presidency to open negotiations with the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia. I hope we can achieve that objective, but we need to facilitate that. We need to see concrete progress on the issues which have been well rehearsed here today in order for that to be achieved. A firm commitment to good neighbourly relations is a particular priority for the Council, as you well know, and indeed it has been articulated as a priority by many Members here this evening. So I would encourage the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia to intensify bilateral discussions in order to reach a successful settlement on the outstanding issues, and not least on the issue of the name.

I think there is a risk that we will descend into a blame game. I do not think this is fruitful or that it benefits either the country or its neighbours, or indeed the European institutions. It is apparent that, when there are issues of this nature, both sides have to engage. They have to participate fully, particularly in the UN-mediated process in this case. I urge both parties to genuinely engage, and to do so intensively in the weeks ahead. It is really crucial from the Council point of view. I cannot stress that loudly enough: it is absolutely crucial. I think that is apparent from the European Council conclusions of December. So I am appealing to both sides to move forward rapidly.

Finally, I would like once more to express my sincere gratitude for the outstanding work and the commitment of your rapporteur, Mr Howitt, which I think goes above and beyond the call of duty, if I may say so. You have been extremely hard-working and extremely active in working to bring the political parties together to create a compromise, to create the atmosphere and the environment which will allow European integration to come closer to the country and to its people, which is what this process is all about. Again, well done to you, and thank you very much for your hard work. Thank you also to the Members for the very fruitful debate this evening.


  Πρόεδρος. - Έχω λάβει, σύμφωνα με το άρθρο 110 παράγραφος του Κανονισμού, μία πρόταση ψηφίσματος(1).

Η συζήτηση περατώθηκε.

Η ψηφοφορία θα διεξαχθεί την Πέμπτη 23 Μαΐου 2013, στις 12.00 το μεσημέρι.

Γραπτές δηλώσεις (άρθρο 149)


  Monica Luisa Macovei (PPE), in writing. Macedonia must go forward on its way to the European Union and therefore it is essential to send a positive signal regarding its future with us. The name issue between Macedonia and Greece is exclusively a bilateral issue and as such it should not interfere with the opening of accession negotiations. We have an Interim Accord signed between the two countries on 13 September 1995 and it must be respected. All candidate countries must be treated on their own merits and this is why I urge the Council to start accession negotiations by the end of 2013. Progress has been made in the judiciary and the fight against corruption: the Law on the Financing of the Political Parties has been adopted and verification of statements of interest has been established. I encourage the Macedonian authorities to enforce fully the Criminal Code provisions on extended confiscation, illicit enrichment and criminal liability of legal persons. I also encourage them to continue improving the independence and efficiency of the judiciary and the unification of jurisprudence to ensure the predictability of the judiciary and public trust in the system. High-level corruption cases must be a priority along with transparency of public expenditure.


  Cristian Dan Preda (PPE), în scris. Salut dezbaterea asupra Raportului Howitt privind progresele înregistrate de Macedonia în 2012, precum și implicarea raportorului, alături de Comisarul Füle și de Președintele Buzek, în soluționarea crizei politice ce a început la finele anului trecut. Subliniez, de altfel, de la bun început, că acordul de la 1 martie trebuie aplicat integral și că această ocazie de a avansa pe calea integrării europene nu trebuie ratată.

Salut, de asemenea, raportul special publicat de Comisia europeană pe 16 aprilie. Acesta confirmă ceea ce știam de fapt, și anume că această țară a înregistrat progrese importante pe calea aderării, în ciuda crizei politice. Macedonia implementează reformele prevăzute în cadrul Dialogului la nivel înalt pentru aderare demarat în luna martie 2012, relațiile cu vecinii au continuat să fie bune și Macedonia a luat măsuri pentru a îmbunătăți relațiile bilaterale cu Grecia și Bulgaria. Susțin, prin urmare, recomandarea de a deschide negocierile de aderare cu Macedonia, recomandare prezentă de altfel în toate rapoartele de progres ale Comisiei din 2009 încoace.

Disputa în jurul numelui oficial al țării nu trebuie să mai constituie un pretext pentru a le întârzia, mai ales în urma noului impuls pentru soluționarea acesteia intervenit în cadrul ONU în luna aprilie.


  Kristian Vigenin (S&D), in writing. Acknowledging both progress achieved and the recent difficulties in Macedonia, the EP once again calls for accession negotiations to start without delay. The current stalemate not only threatens the country’s EU future, but also echoes internally, with possible consequences on political stability, democracy, and inter-ethnic relations. It is also high time the EP’s position was heard by the Member States. While Macedonia must indeed work towards finding difficult compromises, the EU must also stand up to its commitments by opening negotiations which could facilitate such compromises. I believe the new socialist-led government in Bulgaria will achieve more in improving bilateral relations with its neighbours and help them come closer to EU accession. Meanwhile, Macedonia has a lot to do internally, notably the implementation of the March agreement between the major parties. The time for promises and commitments has ended, and concrete results are now needed with regard to the name issue, relations with neighbours, inter-ethnic relations, the economy, employment, etc. After all, reforms are a matter of political maturity for the Macedonian leadership and Macedonian society. The EU and the neighbouring countries in particular are there to help and to offer a friendly hand which should finally be taken.


  Marina Yannakoudakis (ECR), in writing. I must disagree with my honourable friend who spoke on behalf of my group in this debate. I do not believe that the deadlock on FYROM’s membership of the European Union can be blamed on a lack of movement on the name issue by the Greek Government. FYROM must accept a degree – if not a larger proportion – of the blame. The so-called policy of ‘antiquisation’ in FYROM has seen statues of Alexander the Great and Philip of Macedon erected across the country. Streets, roads and even Skopje’s main airport are named after them. These cynical moves show that FYROM is more interested in its past than in its future. The real barrier to opening accession talks with FYROM is the country’s lack of commitment to genuine reform, as the events of 24 December 2012 have shown. FYROM needs to guarantee free and pluralistic media, enforce anti-corruption legislation and ensure the independence and impartiality of the judiciary if it is serious about joining the European Union.


  Boris Zala (S&D), in writing. For four years now, the Council has refused to invite Macedonia to enter the next stage of the European integration process by opening accession negotiations with the country, despite successive positive recommendations from the European Commission. We all know the reason: the name issue. Regardless of the substance of this particular dispute, the EU’s inability to overcome it betrays a serious problem at the heart of our enlargement policy. This is not to say that Macedonia is without problems. Far from it: the country experienced a serious crisis of democratic institutions in late 2012 and early 2013. Much still remains to be done to improve the rule of law, state capacity, media freedoms, the integrity of the judiciary, inter-ethnic relations and so forth. In this respect, however, Macedonia does not differ so much from other Western Balkan states. The paradox, of course, is that the country could have moved a lot faster on reforms had its accession process not been blocked by bilateral disputes. I hope the Council will not make the same mistake again in 2013.


(1)Βλέπε Συνοπτικά Πρακτικά.

Posljednje ažuriranje: 19. srpnja 2013.Pravna napomena