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Procedimiento : 2019/2172(INI)
Ciclo de vida en sesión
Ciclos relativos a los documentos :

Textos presentados :

A9-0031/2021

Debates :

PV 25/03/2021 - 8
CRE 25/03/2021 - 8

Votaciones :

PV 25/03/2021 - 10
PV 25/03/2021 - 17
CRE 25/03/2021 - 17

Textos aprobados :

P9_TA(2021)0113

Debates
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Jueves 25 de marzo de 2021 - Bruselas Edición revisada

8. Informes 2019-2020 sobre Albania - Informes 2019-2020 sobre Kosovo - Informes 2019-2020 sobre Macedonia del Norte - Informes 2019-2020 sobre Serbia (debate)
Vídeo de las intervenciones
PV
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  Przewodnicząca. – Kolejnym punktem porządku dziennego jest debata łączna na temat sprawozdań z postępów w sprawie Albanii, Kosowa, Macedonii Północnej i Serbii za lata 2019–2020 nad:

– sprawozdaniem sporządzonym przez Isabel Santos w imieniu Komisji Spraw Zagranicznych w sprawie sprawozdań Komisji dotyczących Albanii za lata 2019–2020 (2019/2170(INI)) (A9-0041/2021),

– sprawozdaniem sporządzonym przez Violę Von Cramon-Taubadel w imieniu Komisji Spraw Zagranicznych w sprawie sprawozdań Komisji dotyczących Kosowa za lata 2019–2020 (2019/2172(INI)) (A9-0031/2021),

– sprawozdaniem sporządzonym przez Ilhana Kyuchyuka w imieniu Komisji Spraw Zagranicznych w sprawie sprawozdań Komisji dotyczących Macedonii Północnej za lata 2019–2020 (2019/2174(INI)) (A9-0040/2021) oraz

– sprawozdaniem sporządzonym przez Vladimíra Bilčíka w imieniu Komisji Spraw Zagranicznych w sprawie sprawozdań Komisji dotyczących Serbii za lata 2019–2020 (2019/2175(INI)) (A9-0032/2021).

 
  
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  Isabel Santos, Relatora. – Senhora Presidente, Caros Colegas, compreendam que hoje, ao dirigir-me a esta câmara, as minhas palavras vão também para o povo albanês, para aqueles que olham para a União Europeia com uma contagiante esperança de progresso, modernidade e justiça social. O ânimo, a coragem e a determinação com que os albaneses têm avançado, sem hesitação, nas reformas que lhes foram pedidas, mesmo em momentos de desaire como o caso do terramoto no final de 2019 e da pandemia no último ano, são verdadeiramente inspiradores e permitiram atingir as condições apresentadas em março de 2018 para avançar com as primeiras negociações formais.

As eleições europeias e o atraso por parte da Comissão Europeia na apresentação do relatório no ano passado levaram a que este Parlamento não se pronunciasse sobre a situação na Albânia desde 2018.

Felizmente, durante este período, como já foi reconhecido pelo Conselho de Associação e pela Comissão Europeia, registaram-se muitos progressos em campos tão diversos como os da justiça, do Estado de Direito, do respeito pelos direitos fundamentais, da lei eleitoral, da administração pública, da política económica, da educação e do emprego, da conectividade e da luta contra a corrupção e a criminalidade organizada.

O retomar das condições de funcionamento do Supremo Tribunal e do Tribunal Constitucional com o processo de nomeação de juízes continua a decorrer, bem como o começo do funcionamento das agências de luta contra a corrupção.

São apenas alguns exemplos dos esforços e da vontade demonstrada pela Albânia.

Sei que existem visões diferentes relativamente às reformas implementadas no país. Alguns dirão que é preciso aprofundar estas reformas e avançar com outras. Claro que sim, é sempre possível e necessário fazer mais e melhor.

Este relatório formula, inclusive, um conjunto de recomendações para áreas muito distintas, como o ambiente, a cooperação regional, a comunicação social, o Estado de Direito, entre outras, com o intuito de contribuir para a modernização do país e proporcionar novos horizontes de qualidade de vida às novas gerações e progredir rumo a um maior alinhamento com as políticas europeias.

Este é um caminho que faremos juntos, mas agora, no imediato, impõe-se que o esforço feito pelo país seja reconhecido sem hesitações nem adiamentos, a bem da credibilidade de todo este processo. O mérito no cumprimento das diferentes etapas tem que ter claras consequências nos progressos rumo à adesão.

Um processo em que todos temos a ganhar em oportunidades de negócio, investimento, livre circulação, desenvolvimento, qualidade de vida, capacidade de competição a nível global e na afirmação dos valores que nos unem.

Estou convencida de que as eleições gerais na Albânia, no próximo dia 25 de abril, uma data com grande significado no meu país, permitirão consolidar e renovar procedimentos e estruturas democráticos e ultrapassar a polarização que se tem feito sentir.

Arrumada a disputa eleitoral, importa que todos se concentrem no essencial, porque todos são necessários, todos somos necessários, na exigente tarefa de construir um futuro melhor.

A opção europeia dos albaneses, 97% segundo os estudos de opinião, é clara. Não os podemos defraudar.

Este é um relatório abrangente, equilibrado, que procura abordar as questões mais importantes para a União Europeia e para o povo albanês, algo que só foi possível com a atitude construtiva e dialogante dos diferentes grupos políticos e dos relatores—sombra, a quem deixo o meu profundo agradecimento.

Agora, é tempo de agir na concretização das expectativas do povo albanês, legitimadas pelo caminho feito.

É tempo de agir, colocando os interesses coletivos dos europeus acima dos interesses individuais ou momentâneos de alguns países e de algumas fações políticas.

Sim, Albânia, sim, Albânia, juntos iremos mais longe. Boa sorte, Albânia. Good luck, Albânia.

Good luck Albania!

 
  
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  Viola Von Cramon-Taubadel, rapporteur. – Madam President, I would like to thank everyone who contributed to this report, which I believe sends clear and positive signals to Kosovo. We here in the Parliament have confidence in Kosovo’s European future, and we would expect an equal commitment by the newly elected government of Kosovo. Our committee’s report is a strong one, and this result would have been impossible without the help of the interlocutors in Kosovo and the constructive support of my colleagues here – so thank you once again.

Kosovo’s progress on the European path is in our common interest. Parliament stands strong and united with Kosovo and its people, and we need to make sure that all political actors work alongside us for this European perspective. People in Kosovo are overwhelmingly in favour of the European Union, in fact, no country in the region shows a more positive attitude towards the EU than Kosovo. This fact is not self-evident, however, and cannot be taken for granted forever. If we do not fulfil our promises, we lose credibility and trust. It is high time for the Council to deliver at last on the promise of visa liberalisation. I absolutely share the frustration of the citizens of Kosovo. I wish the European Parliament could decide on this matter.

A very topical problem is also the lack of vaccine supply in Kosovo. The production capacities here in the EU are currently being increased, and this must lead to a much better supply for Kosovo as soon as possible. The EU should support the speedy vaccination of healthcare workers and other most vulnerable groups.

Compared to crisis response, our cooperation regarding the pre-accession funds might not seem that pressing, but in the pursuit of a more sustainable and healthier future for Kosovo the fight against air pollution mainly caused by coal and outdated infrastructure must be tackled as well.

We need to use the Instrument for Pre-accession Assistance (IPA) funds wisely. If we do not invest in the energy transition now, we are harming the health of millions of people, not to mention our climate commitments. IPA funds aim at sustainable development. Therefore they need to be accessible. We particularly expect the Commission not to prioritise only state—sponsored infrastructure projects; SMEs, NGOs, civil society are crucial for sustainable development in the region and they must have access to these funds too. Experts advise the EU to spend more of its resources on democratic institution-building, and less on gas pipelines.

Apart from those obvious EU topics, our report also encourages Kosovo to make more effort on various domestic issues. Amongst them are topics such as climate change, education policy, gender-based violence, to name just a few. The responsibility for this work lies in Pristina. Ultimately, the Government of Kosovo has to pass the reforms and implement them consistently. I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate the new Prime Minister Albin Kurti and his government. I wish them every success in responding to the many challenges ahead and look forward to working on our shared priorities.

To overcome the current difficulties, political stability is a precondition. In the interest of the country, the new assembly and the government should find common ground and enable the election of the new President.

Regarding the Belgrade-Pristina dialogue, I ask them not to go for the low-hanging fruits. I ask Kosovo to stay committed to continue to work with Belgrade and the EU, and despite all difficulties not to abandon the dialogue.

An agreement, and yes ultimately mutual recognition, is a precondition for EU accession both for Serbia and Kosovo. Joining the EU without a comprehensive agreement will not be feasible, neither for Serbia nor for Kosovo. Asking what Kosovo can gain from the dialogue is the wrong approach. All political actors should rather ask themselves what is lost by abandoning the dialogue? The opportunity—cost of not having any agreement is high, and no one gains anything from the current status quo.

This leads me directly to Serbia and the respective report for which I am a shadow rapporteur – after all, Belgrade’s responsibility in this dialogue is not any less, and abandoning it should not be an option for Serbia either.

If President Vučić is truly committed to Serbia’s European path, he should show commitment regarding a comprehensive agreement, which is a precondition for Serbia’s accession. Aleksandar Vučić could and should use his two-thirds parliamentary majority as a strong backing for continuing the dialogue. With this majority ratio, he could easily push through domestic reforms, prove his democratic commitment and deliver changes that improve the livelihood of all Serbian citizens.

We are looking forward to seeing the actual results of his work: better democratic conditions and economic prosperity. What we do not want to see, but unfortunately have to, are certain forms of misuse of power. Here I think about how government and individual MPs attack those whose opinions they do not share: silencing, threatening and harassing political opponents are surely not in line with democratic and EU principles to which Serbia has also committed itself. Political debates can sometimes be very controversial, heated and emotionally charged, but hate speech and orchestrated personal attacks are never tolerable.

These reports are not an end or a conclusion but a stocktake and guidance for further cooperation.

It is almost needless to say that my commitment will continue as ever.

 
  
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  Ilhan Kyuchyuk, rapporteur. – Madam President, the progress report that we’ll be discussing and voting on today covers a period of two years. This should have been full of dynamic events for the Western Balkans. Despite some positive developments like the enlargement methodology, the decision of the European Council on North Macedonia and on Albania at the end of last year was harmful for the Western Balkans and had a direct negative impact on the respective countries and their societies.

But the COVID pandemic that hit the region dramatically has shown us something else. Europe has managed to prove that it stands behind its partners. The mobilisation of EUR 3.3 billion for the countries of the region to deal with the effects of the pandemic was a clear demonstration of the European solidarity which has long been called into question. It has now proven to be real and this is well underlined in all four reports, because the EU’s engagement with the Western Balkans surpasses that of any other region and is in our strategic interest.

In particular, on the Republic of North Macedonia, as standing rapporteur I would work to highlight some important elements of the report. But before that, let me first express my gratitude for the constructive work of the shadow rapporteurs, whose contributions undoubtedly enriched the report. North Macedonia has come along and uneasy way to building reforms and compromises, until it reached the stage of starting formal EU accession negotiations and deservedly became the 30th NATO member.

The report clearly reflects that. It is an objective account of what we have seen in that country in recent years. Indeed, consistent progress was achieved. The country demonstrated continuity in its dedicated commitment to the European path and understanding of the need to implement stable and inclusive democratic reforms, to stand for democracy and the rule of law in order to reinforce the climate of mutual trust. The report recognises that and further calls on all political parties to remain constructive, to refrain from using nationalistic and inflammatory rhetoric. Engaging in a constructive dialogue is a prerequisite of good governance in the pursuit of the cross—party goal of accession. Maintaining a steady pace in adopting EU reforms as a means of ensuring efficient functioning of democratic institutions and procedures is also well recognised.

Of course, some setbacks such as the impact of the COVID—19 pandemic and the tensions in the diplomatic relations with Bulgaria were noted as well.

But North Macedonia shouldn’t stop with the reforms as in some areas, like the fight against corruption, organised crime and media freedom, more reforms are needed. Reforms are needed in areas like more inclusivity in the society. We need to see deeper and faster reforms, and we need to see progress for sure.

It is further important that public administration reforms are prioritised by systematically applying merit—based standards in public appointments and in promotions. The cooperative approach of North Macedonia throughout the negotiations of the Prespa Agreement with Greece and the Treaty on Good Neighbourly Relations with Bulgaria is also underlined.

Having said that I hope that both countries – North Macedonia and Bulgaria – will resume the constructive dialogue on the pending bilateral issues in order to achieve sustainable results. Reaching a compromise over an action plan of concrete measures, implementation of which is to be regularly assessed in accordance with the Friendship Treaty, would start the process and would allow the Council to convene the first intergovernmental conference as soon as possible.

I am convinced that further delays will put at risk the credibility, objectivity and reliability of the accession process.

We have to focus on the bigger picture. Through building trust together we are building our common future within the EU as we need bridges that unite us more than walls that divide.

няколко думи и на български. Когато едно доверие е нарушено, безспорно то трябва да бъде възстановено и най-добрият начин за това е да се върнем към основите на Договора. Само той ще ни даде възможност да начертаем пътната карта на региона, който неминуемо е свързан с интеграцията на всички страни в Европейския съюз. От това ще спечели регионалното сътрудничество, от това ще спечелят добросъседските отношения, от това ще спечели и целият Европейски съюз.

Finally, on the Kosovo report, for which I am shadow rapporteur, the country has demonstrated continued and strong commitment to advancing on its European path and accelerating the reforms, as well as strong support for European integration among the population, and all of this deserves to be underlined.

I do believe it is high time for all European Member States to recognise Kosovo and all its citizens to benefit from visa liberalisation, because all the benchmarks have been fulfilled since 2018.

The last elections once again demonstrated that the country deserves credit for showing a high level of political opportunity, and I look forward for the new government speeding up the reforms and working actively on the Pristina—Belgrade dialogue.

 
  
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  Vladimír Bilčík, rapporteur. – Madam President, let me begin by saying that I very much regret that I have not been able to travel to the Western Balkans in over a year. And this is the case for all of us here, colleagues and I think it’s important to underline that we need to re-open as soon as this is possible, because if we really truly want to be engaged in the region of the Western Balkans, we must be engaged on the ground.

Meanwhile, we have been engaged. We have been engaged through various channels, online and through the modern technologies and we have followed the situation very, very closely. We have been engaged in conversation with our partners, and I do want to express my sincere condolences to all of those who have lost their loved ones in Serbia but also across the Western Balkans.

We are all in this pandemic together and we can come out of this pandemic only together; and I hope we come out of it stronger by also underlying what unites us. And what unites us is the European perspective, European perspective for Serbia, European perspective for the countries in the region of the Western Balkans.

As a standing rapporteur for Serbia, I believe we have a balanced report on Serbia. We welcome progress where progress has been made and we are critical where criticism is due. But most of all, what I’ve tried to push – and we did have difficult negotiations on the report, is a constructive forward looking approach. We cannot dwell on a single case or a single detail. I think we as politicians have the responsibility for pushing a systematic change. A systematic change, not because of us in Europe, only, but because of the people and the countries in the region. This is important, and this is especially important as a message to my and our Serbian partners.

Let me highlight some of the details from the report and some of the key messages. I very much welcome the fact that EU membership continues to be Serbia’s strategic goal and strategic priority, and that it is among the priorities of the newly formed government following the elections in June last year.

However, we need to inject more dynamism into the negotiating process. It’s a welcome sign that the report by the Commission was discussed in the Narodna Skupština. That was a very good point, but of course what’s in the report by the Commission but also in this report – which I hope we adopt successfully in this House today – are the key messages, which we want to discuss in partnership.

We are here to support the reforms and the change, which must take place on the ground. It’s important that we remember the basic criteria, the Copenhagen criteria, and the basic criterion is the political criterion. That’s why rule of law reforms are essential. That’s why the inter-party dialogue within Serbia – which I very much welcome and I welcome the fact that we launched its second phase in our conversation with Ivica Dačić earlier this month – is key for making progress on the quality of political competition, on the quality of electoral conditions and on the quality of democracy in Serbia.

I do hope we have a meaningful conversation with all pro-European forces in the coming months in Serbia, and we can help through our facilitation by Members of the European Parliament and other colleagues, to achieve progress in this area. We need more trust, more good faith, more dialogue, less and fewer conflicts and we also need a calmer atmosphere. Attacks against journalists are unacceptable. Attacks against NGOs are unacceptable.

We will have a debate this afternoon in this House about Malta and I do hope that all of us who are so critical about the situation with journalists in Serbia will be equally critical with respect to Malta, or other countries: my own Slovakia, for instance. This is important. We need to hold everybody to the same standards. This is the message which I want to send to our Serbian partners.

I do want to welcome the progress that’s been made in the Pristina in the Belgrade-Pristina Dialogue. That’s something which has been a big achievement in terms of the past year. The EU facilitated, EU-led dialogue. It is important it continues and it is important it brings results. We do need a comprehensive legally binding agreement, which will help us reconcile the past and move forward.

This is important for the European perspective for Serbia and the European perspective of the region. Reconciliation in general is a point which we must underline. And I also want to underline the fact that in public communication it is important to take action following words. This is in particular important when it comes to foreign policy, in the case of Serbia. Serbia has had the lowest alignment rate with our foreign policy.

This must change. The only meaningful European future of Serbia can only take place if Serbia does gradually move ahead in this respect. And I very much hope that we can have much closer ties when it comes to countering the negative influences, also the fight against disinformation with respect to Russia and China.

This is a joint debate, and let me just make a point on Albania very quickly on behalf of my colleague David Lega, who is a shadow rapporteur. We welcome the commitment of Albania to integration and support the convening of the first intergovernmental conference following the complete fulfilment of the conditions set out by the European Council, but the fight against corruption and amendments to the media law are a crucial element.

Let me make one last point on enlargement in general. I think we would deserve a much bigger debate on this issue here. This has been one of the biggest achievements of the European project in the past decades. I think each country would deserve its own debate and I hope we can do this next time we meet and discuss the Western Balkans.

 
  
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  Ana Paula Zacarias, President-in-Office of the Council. – Madam President, first of all I would like to thank the distinguished rapporteurs for their presentations and their reports that are very timely and important for us also in the Council.

And let me begin by recalling the EU’s unequivocal support for the European perspective of the Western Balkans region based on fair and rigorous conditionality and on the principles of own merits. The Portuguese Presidency remains committed to strengthening the EU engagement with the region, in particular in these challenging times of the coronavirus crisis.

I would like to recall that the Council, in its conclusions of March 2020, decided to open the accession negotiations with the Republic of North Macedonia and the Republic of Albania. And I concur with you in welcoming the determination demonstrated by these two countries to advance on the EU reform agenda and to deliver tangible and sustained results.

These decisions pave the way for the important work on the framework for negotiations that is still going on in the Council. The Presidency is determined to continue the work with a view to holding the first intergovernmental conferences and formally opening the accession negotiations has soon as possible.

As you know, in March 2020, the Council endorsed the Commission communication enhancing the accession process. The objective is to make this process more predictable, more credible, dynamic and subject to stronger political steering, based on objective criteria and rigorous positive and negative conditionality and reversibility.

At the same time, it underlines that fundamental, democratic rule-of-law and economic reforms represent the core objective of the accession process. The proper functioning and independence of the democratic institutions are essential elements of well-functioning democracies and a key condition for EU accession. In this regard, let me stress the importance of continued reforms and their implementation by both the Republic of North Macedonia and the Republic of Albania.

Regarding the Republic of North Macedonia in particular, I would like to stress that the Portuguese Presidency, along with the Commission, has been actively supporting all efforts to find pragmatic solutions to pave the way for the approval of the negotiation framework in the Council with a view to holding the first intergovernmental conference as soon as possible. Consistent progress has been achieved, but at the same time, we also urge the authorities and the political parties of North Macedonia to sustain their efforts to strengthen democracy and implement the deeper reforms.

With regard to Albania, constructive political dialogue and cooperation in parliament between the government and the opposition is essential for progress and the sustainability of the reforms. Even after the electoral reform, the political environment remains strongly paralysed and we stress the importance of further strengthening the political dialogue within the country. We also commend Albania for its continuous 100% alignment with EU common foreign and security policy, which serves as a positive example for the entire region.

Now on Serbia, I would like to start by underlining that the President’s aim is to hold an intergovernmental conference if possible, still this semester, under the revised enlargement methodology and to advance the EU enlargement process as much as possible. As you well know, the pace of the accession negotiations will continue to depend on Serbia’s own progress and reform efforts, in particular in the key areas of the rule of law and in the normalisation of relations with Kosovo. We welcome the fact that the new Serbian Government has made EU integration and the normalisation of relations with Kosovo its priority. Despite some advances, we need to see more progress on the rule of law and we need to see more, faster implementation of the reforms.

It is particularly important that the reforms focus on the independence of the judiciary, the fight against corruption, media freedom, domestic handling of war crimes and the fight against organised crime. It is also important that Serbia fulfils its commitment and steps up its efforts in gradually aligning with EU common foreign and security policy.

We encourage parliamentarian political forces in Serbia to engage in the inter-party dialogue, led by the European Parliament, with a view to forging broad cross-party and societal consensus on EU-related reforms. And I really would like to thank the European Parliament for its relentless efforts in this process.

We also welcome the resumption of the EU-facilitated Belgrade-Pristina Dialogue. It’s important that it will continue. It’s important that we will get some concrete results. We expect Serbia and the new government in Kosovo to engage in this dialogue in good faith and in the spirit of compromise to achieve a comprehensive, legally binding agreement in accordance with international law and the EU acquis.

The Stabilisation and Association Agreement offers Kosovo an opportunity for sustainable progress and rapprochement with the European Union, in line with the European perspective on the region. At the same time, it creates opportunities for trade and investment.

We share your concerns about the limited progress in reforms in Kosovo and the challenging domestic political context marked by early elections and several changes in government. We certainly call for an acceleration of the reforms and all political actors must now deliver.

We recognise the importance of visa liberalisation for Kosovo’s citizens and the Portuguese Presidency will continue to follow this matter.

Finally, I would like to stress, as some of you have mentioned here, that the COVID-19 crisis continues to have a severe negative impact on all our societies and on all our economies, and the EU is providing significant support to the Western Balkans, including to Kosovo. So let me assure you that we remain committed to continuing this important cooperation. Thank you very much for your attention, and thank you, Madam President, for your indulgence.

 
  
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  Olivér Várhelyi, Member of the Commission. – Madam President, I should like to thank the House for its continued strong support for the European perspective of the whole of the Western Balkan region.

As your reports recognise, we have gone through an extremely difficult year. But we have never lost sight of our closest neighbours, providing unprecedented support to the Western Balkans region. For example, the EUR 3.3 billion emergency support package a year ago was also coupled with an economic package of EUR 9 billion only last October, and we hope to raise another EUR 20 billion together with the economic plan.

In addition, we extended a number of initiatives normally reserved for EU Member States to our partners in the region, effectively treating them as future EU members. This is in line with the strong commitment of this Commission to the Western Balkans. The region is a priority for us. Its future lies in the European Union.

Our current focus is on providing vaccines as soon as possible. Unfortunately, this is proving more difficult than we had hoped. But I can assure you that we are leaving no stone unturned to get vaccines to the region. I am very pleased that the COVAX mechanism, to which the EU is one of the biggest contributors, is now delivering the first doses to the Western Balkans. We also continue working with EU Member States and vaccine manufacturers to work to resell vaccine doses to the Western Balkans under the advance purchase agreements for which the EU is making available EUR 70 million, only to the Western Balkans.

In order to be able to continue our important support to the Western Balkans we would need to agree as soon as possible on the future instrument, the Instrument for Pre-accession Assistance (IPA) III. I express my hope and expectation to this distinguished House that we will soon be able to reach a compromise confirming to the region that the EU is a credible partner.

Let me now turn to the reports. I thank all rapporteurs for their work and commitment. I will begin with Albania. Let me start by acknowledging the exceptional challenges the country has had to cope with due to the devastating earthquake just before they were hit with the COVID—19 pandemic. Albania’s determination in the pursuit of its EU reform agenda is therefore all the more remarkable. This enthusiasm and engagement is something that we need to praise and recognise.

We consider that Albania has fulfilled the conditions set by the Council in March last year for the holding of the first intergovernmental conference (IGC). The implementation of the justice reform has continued. Both the Constitutional Court and the High Court have resumed functioning. The vetting process of the re—evaluation of judges and prosecutors is progressing smoothly. This is an unprecedented reform and has our full support. The fight against corruption, organised crime and money laundering have also continued. The specialised structures against corruption and organised crime have all been established.

As you may have seen, there has been good progress made in law enforcement, where we have witnessed a number of successful large—scale international operations. Of course, we need to stress the importance of continuing the reform effort, particularly with respect to the further vetting and appointment of magistrates, as well as strengthening the track record on law enforcement.

We have commended progress made on the electoral reform in accordance with the 5 June agreement of last year and implementing the recommendations made by the Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights at the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE/ODIHR). Ahead of the upcoming elections it is important – and I do encourage all political parties to do their best here – to maintain a constructive dialogue, also on all other crucial matters. This will ensure that Albania continues to deliver results and moves steadily on its path towards the EU. The Commission will continue to monitor this thoroughly and, at the same time, it goes without saying that the track record of the efforts against crime and corruption must continue.

Against the background of all these achievements, we do look forward to the adoption of the negotiating framework and to holding the first IGC as soon as possible with Albania. We stand ready to help the Presidency to this end.

Let me now turn to Kosovo. I’m pleased to see that we are very much on the same page on what Kosovo’s priorities should be to advance on its European path. The Commission also agrees with the Parliament’s position that it is high time to proceed on visa liberalisation for Kosovo’s citizens but, as you know, the decision has to be made by the Member States in the Council. We encourage Kosovo’s authorities to reach out to Member States to address their remaining concerns. This is a critical moment for Kosovo. The citizens have just made their voices heard through elections and the new leadership will soon be in place.

There are three main messages I would like to make. First, it is essential to complete the setting-up of new institutions. After the formation of the new assembly and the new government this Monday, Kosovo needs to elect a new president without delay. Kosovo cannot afford more political uncertainty in these challenging times.

Second, we welcome the fact that the winning party has put a strong emphasis on issues that are at the core of Kosovo’s European agenda, such as the fight against corruption and organised crime, economic and social development and the shift towards a greener economy. With its strong mandate, the new government will have an opportunity to deliver on reforms. The Commission stands ready to support it in its direction. However, we also expect the government to build and take ownership of key existing reform commitments and achievements.

My third message concerns the EU-facilitated dialogue with Serbia. It is essential that the new government of Kosovo commits to continuing the dialogue. This is crucial for the citizens of Kosovo and Serbia, the normalisation of relations between the two and for the perspectives of both. EU Special Representative Lajčák visited the region earlier this month and expects that the next high—level meeting can take place within a reasonable time.

Let me now turn to North Macedonia. Overall, the draft report is in line with the main findings of the Commission report and also the latest developments are fully reflected. As you have rightly pointed out, North Macedonia has maintained a steady pace in its implementation of EU reforms, in particular in key areas of the rule of law, the fight against corruption and organised crime. However, much needs to be done.

The Member States’ decision to open accession negotiations last spring was truly historic. We look forward to the adoption of the negotiating framework and the holding of the first intergovernmental conference as soon as possible, hopefully still under this Presidency. In the meantime, it is important that both the government and the opposition continue to deliver on EU—related reforms, in particular with regard to the fundamentals. As you know, regional cooperation and good neighbourly relations form an essential part of the country’s process of moving towards the EU. It is important that bilateral agreements, including the Prespa agreement with Greece and the Treaty on good neighbourly relations with Bulgaria, continue to be implemented in good faith by all parties.

At such a pivotal moment, I encourage both Skopje and Sofia to redouble their efforts to find a mutually acceptable solution to the pending bilateral issues. I would like to echo your report by encouraging all parties to act in a constructive manner and to refrain from statements or actions that might undermine the EU’s wider interests. This House has shown its continued dedication to improve the democratic processes in North Macedonia and to support the country’s EU perspective, including through the Jean Monnet dialogue. I count on you to remain engaged and to send common messages of encouragement to North Macedonia.

Lastly, let me turn to Serbia. I welcome the report as an encouragement for Serbia to accelerate on its path to the EU accession. The report acknowledges the accomplishments while, of course, much more still needs to be done. I’m glad that the Joint Parliamentary Committee with Serbia has recently been relaunched, the inter—party dialogue with the Serbian Parliament and the European Commission, of course, strongly supports this dialogue as a crucial forum for cross—party debates.

On the accession negotiations with Serbia, last week I presented to the Council a proposal of how the revised methodology could be applied both to Montenegro and Serbia. I look forward to the Member States deciding soon and bringing this forward. We need to encourage the country to remain fully engaged on its EU path. This is key for the stability of the region. We now have the opportunity to speed up the country’s accession negotiations provided that key EU—related reforms are implemented as an urgent priority. This is also an opportunity to make progress in the EU—facilitated dialogue with Pristina towards a comprehensive, legally binding agreement. We must build on the commitment of the new government in Belgrade. We need to engage intensively with the authorities in these three interconnected objectives: bring forward reforms; bring forward accession negotiations and successfully conclude the dialogue with Pristina.

We have already seen commitment in a number of crucial areas, such as kicking off the second phase of the inter—party dialogue, launching the constitutional reform by submitting the initiative to change the constitution in the area of the judiciary to the parliament, and the government’s adoption of the action plan of the new media strategy.

Of course, much more still needs to be done. Our priority now is to work with the authorities to help them translate these steps into tangible progress on the ground. We’re grateful for the continued support of Members of the European Parliament in passing these messages. Whatever the difficulties, Serbia should not lose sight of its EU membership goal. It should keep focusing on fundamental reforms with continued EU support. With this, I thank you very much for your attention.

 
  
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  Андрей Ковачев, от името на групата PPE. – Г-жо Председател, г-н Комисар, уважаеми колеги, ние сме за разширяването, защото сме убедени, че това е най-добрият начин по най-бързия начин да се преодолеят ужасните последици от комунизма. Все още в сегашната Република Северна Македония се дискриминира всеки, който открито заяви своята българска идентичност и произход. Историческата истина е табу, а който открито я споделя, бива подлаган на натиск, обиди и дискриминация.

Проблемът не е културно-исторически спор, а потъпкване на основни демократични права от една страна кандидат, като правото на свободно изразяване без страх от негативни последици. Над 130 000 са българските граждани по произход в Република Северна Македония, като част от българската историческа общност, която до идването на Титовия режим представлява мнозинство там. Тези хора живеят в страх, те са притискани да не се впишат като българи по време на предстоящото преброяване. Последен пример е представителят на конкурса Евровизия. Неговият единствен грях беше, че сподели своя български произход. Последва вълна от обиди, заплахи и опити за отстраняването му от конкурса. „Да“ на разширяването към всички страни от Западните Балкани, „Не“ на лъжите, омразата и дискриминацията.

Colleagues especially from the Greens and from the Socialists: please wake up and open your eyes.

I see colleague Fajon is after me. Is it for you a historical provocation towards the Slovenian people if I say something about the atrocities of the Tito’s Communists, especially, for example, in Huda Jama?

Г-жо Председател, г-н Комисар, уважаеми колеги, ние сме за разширяването, защото сме убедени, че това е най-добрият начин по най-бързия начин да се преодолеят ужасните последици от комунизма. Все още в сегашната Република Северна Македония се дискриминира всеки, който открито заяви своята българска идентичност и произход. Историческата истина е табу, а който открито я споделя, бива подлаган на натиск, обиди и дискриминация.

Проблемът не е културно-исторически спор, а потъпкване на основни демократични права от една страна кандидат, като правото на свободно изразяване без страх от негативни последици. Над 130 000 са българските граждани по произход в Република Северна Македония като част от българската историческа общност, която до идването на Титовия режим представлява мнозинство там. Тези хора живеят в страх, те са притискани да не се впишат като българи по време на предстоящото преброяване. Последен пример е представителят на конкурса Евровизия. Неговият единствен грях беше, че сподели своя български произход. Последва вълна от обиди, заплахи и опити за отстраняването му от конкурса. „Да“ на разширяването към всички страни от Западните Балкани, „не“ на лъжите, омразата и дискриминацията.

 
  
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  Tanja Fajon, v imenu skupine S&D. – Gospa predsedujoča, širitvena politika je temelj stabilne in povezane Evrope. Ni več časa za izgovore, za opravičila, za politično izsiljevanje, neiskrenost, neizpolnjevanje obljub.

Države Zahodnega Balkana so del Evrope in skupaj nosimo odgovornost za napredek in razvoj naše celine. Preveč razočaranj smo doživeli na eni in na drugi strani v širitvenem procesu.

In brez temeljitega preskoka v zavedanju, da potrebujemo drug drugega, nam bo spodletelo in škodo bodo čutili državljani, posebej mladi ljudje, ki danes množično zapuščajo Zahodni Balkan.

Poročila, o katerih danes razpravljamo, so uravnotežen in verodostojen pregled dveletnega dela v štirih državah. Vse so dosegle napredek na področju pravne države, temeljnih pravic, svobodnih medijev, v boju proti korupciji, a čaka jih še veliko dela.

In danes mora biti naše sporočilo jasno: podpiramo države na njihovi poti v Evropsko unijo, a hkrati ne bomo pristali na popuščanje, posebej ko gre za spoštovanje vladavine prava in demokracije.

Vlade Evropske unije danes vnovič pozivam, naj izpolnijo obljubo in odprejo pristopna pogajanja za Albanijo in Severno Makedonijo.

Državi sta izpolnili pogoje. Bolgarski veto Severni Makedoniji je neodgovoren. Enostranski interesi, volilni koledar nimajo nič skupnega s kriteriji, ki jih mora država izpolniti. Zato pozivam, naj Bolgarija umakne veto.

Zdaj je na preizkušnji verodostojnost Evropske unije. Kriza, ki je danes na obzorju, bo ogrozila tudi širitveni proces za ostale države.

Državam Zahodnega Balkana danes želim predvsem srečno na njihovi poti, nam pa veliko modrosti in poguma, da jim pri tem pomagamo.

 
  
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  Michal Šimečka, on behalf of the Renew Group. – Madam President, I’ll focus on the progress report on Albania, but many of the key messages are in fact wider in application and relate to the Western Balkans as a whole. And the key message from the European Parliament on Albania, but also more generally, is that despite all the difficulties, despite the pandemic, the European Union and this Parliament specifically remains absolutely committed to moving forward with the accession negotiations with respect to Albania, and convening that very important first intergovernmental conference as soon as possible.

Now as elsewhere, in Albania obviously the challenges are obvious and must be addressed. In the case of Albania, its democracy is in dire need of consolidation and stability and the country needs to move beyond the climate of constant political conflict and division that we’ve seen in recent years. And here the upcoming parliamentary elections in April, as was said by the Commissioner, will be a crucial test.

Whoever wins, there can be absolutely no doubt that elections are organised in a free and fair fashion and in accordance with the best international practices. Anything short of that will sow distrust of democratic institutions, prolonged political conflict and damage Albania’s accession trajectory.

And second, and this is again of a more general nature and it has been mentioned by the Commissioner, the justice sector and reforms in the rule of law must be of the highest priority to the next government, especially after what we are experiencing in the EU that some Member States after accession are, we say, undermining the rule of law, checks and balances. Therefore, it is absolutely clear and right that compliance when it comes to rule of law will become more stringent than ever when it comes to the enlargement countries.

The European Union, and this Parliament in particular, will continue to support Albania and all the other states on the European path.

 
  
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  Thierry Mariani, au nom du groupe ID. – Madame la Présidente, la politique européenne à l’égard des Balkans occidentaux peut se résumer en deux mots: soumission et hypocrisie.

La soumission, d’abord, car l’Union européenne ne poursuit pas l’intérêt de ses États membres dans les Balkans; elle sert les intérêts de l’OTAN. L’hypocrisie, car les différents rapports prétendent que le Kosovo a vocation à intégrer l’Union européenne, ou que l’Albanie est sur le point de le faire, alors que chacun sait que cela n’est ni une prérogative du Parlement européen, ni une volonté de l’intégralité des États membres.

Qu’on le dise clairement: les Français subissent déjà les effets déplorables du précédent élargissement; ils n’ont aucune envie de voir les mêmes erreurs se répéter. Nous voyons bien que ces élargissements ne tiennent pas leurs promesses: ils devaient densifier notre stature internationale, ils nous rendent encore plus dépendants de Washington; ils devaient prévenir l’avènement de nouveaux conflits, ils poussent sans cesse à la provocation avec Moscou; ils devaient renforcer notre coopération pratique, la gestion calamiteuse de la crise du COVID démontre l’inverse.

L’Albanie ne doit pas intégrer l’Union européenne. Elle exporte ses mafias jusqu’au cœur des campagnes françaises. Elle a signé des accords d’extradition avec le régime d’Erdoğan. Elle ne cache même plus ses inclinaisons hégémoniques, aux dépens de populations serbes constamment discriminées par la communauté internationale. L’Albanie constitue aujourd’hui une zone de confluence des influences étrangères les plus dangereuses pour la sécurité des nations.

Le débat public donnera bientôt en France l’occasion à chacun de clarifier sa position sur cette question, mais je pense que les Français y sont très majoritairement opposés et nous ne céderons pas au jeu de couloir habituel sur ces sujets. Sortons de l’hypocrisie et affirmons-le: non à l’élargissement, non à l’entrée de l’Albanie, cheval de Troie de la Turquie dans l’Union européenne.

 
  
  

VORSITZ: KATARINA BARLEY
Vizepräsidentin

 
  
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  Thomas Waitz, im Namen der Verts/ALE-Fraktion. – Frau Präsidentin! Ich beziehe mich auf den Albanien—Bericht, und zuerst möchte ich für die gute Zusammenarbeit und für die kooperative Stimmung bei der Erstellung des Berichts danken.

Wir haben in dem Bericht festgehalten, dass wir die Justizreformen, die in dieser Form und in dieser Dramatik wohl keinen Vergleich zu scheuen haben, willkommen heißen. Wir haben die Fortschritte in der Korruptionsbekämpfung gesehen und haben diese in dem Bericht auch entsprechend erwähnt.

Aber natürlich bleibt viel zu tun beim Kampf gegen die organisierte Kriminalität, bei dem Einsatz für Medienfreiheit in Albanien, aber auch bei der Frage der Unterstützung zum Beispiel von Frauen, die Opfer von häuslicher Gewalt geworden sind. Es reicht hier nicht, wenn die richtigen Gesetze verabschiedet werden, sondern es muss dafür Sorge getragen werden, dass die Behörden auch fähig sind, entsprechend auf solche Fälle zu reagieren und Frauen in diesem Zusammenhang Sicherheit zu bieten.

Wir brauchen eine weitere Modernisierung der öffentlichen Verwaltung, keine Frage. Albanien ist ein Land mit einem wunderbaren kulturellen Erbe, mit reichhaltigen historischen Gütern, mit einer wunderbaren Natur, mit Naturschätzen, die man an anderen Orten Europas heute leider vergeblich sucht. Wir heißen die Ankündigung des Ministerpräsidenten Edi Rama willkommen – zur geplanten Errichtung des ersten Wildfluss—Nationalparks Europas, an der Vjosa: 300 Kilometer unverbauter Fluss, ein Juwel für die Arterhaltung, ein Juwel für die Biodiversität, etwas, was in die Strategie des Green Deals passt. Und wir hoffen, dass wir von der Seite der Europäischen Union über IPA-III-Mittel und andere Finanzmittel diese Entwicklung unterstützen können.

Aber eines ist klar: Wir sollten unseren Ankündigungen auch Folge leisten und Beitrittsverhandlungen mit Albanien ehestmöglich beginnen.

 
  
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  Ангел Джамбазки, от името на групата ECR. – Г-н Председател, уважаеми колеги, днес в Република Северна Македония се извършва драстично нарушаване на човешките права, на основното човешко право на самоопределение. Днес в Македония един певец, Гарванлиев, получи повече от 400 смъртни заплахи, само защото се определи като българин. Днес в Македония 50 човека са привикани от драстичната бивша югославска тайна полиция, за да дадат обяснения защо са купили български книги. Днес в Република Северна Македония се горят български знамена, уважаеми колеги. Днес в Република Северна Македония се привикват хора, защото са се самоопределили като българи. Днес в Република Северна Македония има не повече от 130 хиляди човека, които са се самоопределили като българи и които нямат право да направят това свое самоопределение на предстоящото преброяване на населението.

Това, уважаеми, е Северна Корея. Това се случва не в Африка, това се случва не в Азия, това се случва не някъде по света. Това драстично нарушаване на основно човешко право се случва в Европа, под носа ви и затова съм възмутен от поведението на част от нашите колеги, главно от групата на социалистите и зелените, които се правят, че не забелязват тези драстични нарушения на човешките права, а напротив – се опитват да стоварят някаква хипотетична вина върху българското правителство за това, че защитава историческата истина.

Да, Гоце Делчев е българин, да, Иван Михайлов е българин, да, Тодор Александров е българин, да, Братя Миладинови са българи и те винаги са се самоопределяли като такива. И да, днес в Македония живеят стотици хиляди граждани, които се самоопределят като българи и затова, колеги, не си позволявайте лицемерието да се опитвате да се правите, че не виждате това драстично нарушаване на правата им. И не си позволявайте да налагате двойни стандарти, това просто не може и няма да се случва, защото противоречи на всякаква идея за Европейски съюз, защото противоречи на всичките ви идеи за това как трябва да се защитават правата на всяко едно човешко същество на самоопределение. И това, пак казвам, се случва в Европа. Не можете да промените факта, че до 1944 г. Македония е българска и тя ще остане такава.

 
  
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  Στέλιος Κούλογλου, εξ ονόματος της ομάδας The Left. – Κυρία Πρόεδρε, θα μιλήσω στα ελληνικά γιατί σήμερα είναι μια πολύ σημαντική μέρα για την Ελλάδα: είναι τα 200 χρόνια από την Ελληνική Επανάσταση, η οποία ήταν η αρχή του τέλους της Οθωμανικής Αυτοκρατορίας στα Βαλκάνια, αλλά και η αρχή της ευρωπαϊκής αλληλεγγύης, γιατί η επανάσταση νίκησε χάρη, φυσικά, στον ηρωισμό των εξεγερμένων, αλλά και χάρη στην ευρωπαϊκή αλληλεγγύη που εκφράστηκε τότε από τις δημοκρατικές δυνάμεις και τους δημοκρατικούς ανθρώπους της Ευρώπης.

Ήδη, όμως, από εκείνα τα χρόνια και μέχρι σήμερα, υπήρχε ένας «ιός», για να χρησιμοποιήσω έναν όρο, ο «ιός των Βαλκανίων», που σήμαινε πολέμους και εθνικές συγκρούσεις. Συνεχίστηκε μέσα στα χρόνια και μέσα στην ιστορία· πρόσφατα είχαμε τον καταστροφικό πόλεμο της Γιουγκοσλαβίας την περίοδο 1991-1995, και βέβαια τον καταστροφικό βομβαρδισμό το 1999 της Σερβίας, που τότε ανήκε στη Γιουγκοσλαβία.

Σήμερα, ακόμα υπάρχουν τέτοιοι «ιοί»: υπάρχουν εθνικές διαμάχες, εδαφικά προβλήματα και διενέξεις, προβλήματα σεβασμού των μειονοτήτων, του κράτους δικαίου, προβλήματα καταπολέμησης της διαφθοράς σε όλα τα υποψήφια κράτη μέλη. Υπάρχουν σοβαρά ζητήματα, υπάρχουν και λιγότερο σοβαρά, όπως η Εurovision και ποιος θα είναι ο τραγουδιστής στη Εurovision· αλλά υπάρχει και ένα αντίδοτο, ένα φάρμακο σε όλα αυτά.

Το φάρμακο, το εμβόλιο απέναντι στον «ιό των Βαλκανίων» είναι το πνεύμα της Συμφωνίας των Πρεσπών. Χάρη στη Συμφωνία των Πρεσπών και στο κουράγιο και το θάρρος που έδειξαν οι ηγέτες της Ελλάδας και της Βόρειας Μακεδονίας, έχουμε μια συμφωνία που μπορεί να αποτελέσει το μοντέλο, τον τρόπο επίλυσης και το φάρμακο για τον εθνικισμό στα Βαλκάνια που, δυστυχώς, συνεχίζεται ακόμη.

 
  
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  Fabio Massimo Castaldo (NI). – Signora Presidente, onorevoli colleghi, signor Commissario, sono estremamente preoccupato perché ho la forte sensazione che l'Unione europea stia perdendo i Balcani occidentali.

Lo slancio dato dalla decisione del Consiglio di aprire i negoziati con l'Albania e la Macedonia del Nord si è schiantato sul vedo bulgaro e la pandemia COVID ha esacerbato alcuni trend geopolitici già in atto, amplificando, anche a causa della geopolitica dei vaccini e delle infrastrutture, il ruolo di Cina, Russia, Turchia ed Emirati Arabi, pronti a sfruttare il vuoto politico, o quantomeno percepito dai nostri partners, e lasciato proprio da noi, dall'UE.

Serve un cambio di passo, servono azioni decise perché questa disaffezione non diventi anche una vera e propria alienazione. È importante valorizzare i passi in avanti compiuti da Serbia, Albania, Macedonia del Nord e Kosovo e trasformarli in opportunità, piuttosto che soffermarsi solo ed esclusivamente sulle mancanze.

Serve che si sblocchi quanto prima la negoziazione di Albania e Macedonia del Nord con l'organizzazione delle relative conferenze intergovernative ed è fondamentale che tutti i paesi dei Balcani occidentali siano veramente e seriamente coinvolti in quell'importante momento di riflessione che ci accingiamo ad affrontare: la Conferenza sul futuro dell'Europa, un progetto europeo del quale devono inequivocabilmente tornare a sentire di far pienamente parte. E tutto questo dipende anche da noi.

 
  
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  Christian Sagartz (PPE). – Sehr geehrte Frau Präsidentin, geschätzte Kolleginnen und Kollegen! Nordmazedonien hat zweifelsfrei in den letzten Jahren tiefgreifende Reformen konsequent umgesetzt, um Teil der Europäischen Union zu werden.

Dabei wurden nicht nur Gesetzesänderungen beschlossen, sondern teils tiefgreifende Schritte gesetzt. Das Land hat seine Verfassung verändert. Ja, es hat sogar seinen Namen geändert, um Teil dieser Europäischen Gemeinschaft zu werden, und das waren harte – sehr harte – Schritte, um Teil der Gemeinschaft zu werden. Und natürlich möchte ich auch hier nicht verhehlen: Es gibt weiterhin Reformbedarf. Das betrifft die Korruptionsbekämpfung, aber auch die Stärkung einer unabhängigen Justiz.

Ich bin zuversichtlich, dass weiterhin ein Wille zur Veränderung gegeben ist und dass dieses Tempo bei den Reformen gehalten werden kann. Man darf aber festhalten: Nordmazedonien hat seine Aufgaben abgearbeitet. Es liegt an der Europäischen Union, jetzt unsererseits ihre und unsere Aufgaben zu erledigen. Wenn wir in dieser Region glaubwürdig bleiben wollen, dann ist das höchste Zeit.

Zu den Bedenken meiner bulgarischen Kollegen möchte ich ganz klar Stellung nehmen: Ich verstehe diese Sorgen, und ich appelliere an beide Länder, bei der Wortwahl abzurüsten und bei den Differenzen die gemeinsame Zukunft der Region in den Mittelpunkt zu stellen. Drohungen und politische Propaganda stehen im krassen Widerspruch zu den Werten unserer Europäischen Union.

 
  
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  Andreas Schieder (S&D). – Frau Präsidentin, Herr Kommissar! Der Westbalkan steht ganz oben auf der EU-Agenda. Und dort muss er auch ganz oben stehen, denn die EU- Perspektive ist ein ganz, ganz wichtiges Signal an die Menschen im Westbalkan. Aber: Wir müssen auch den EU-Mitgliedstaaten einmal ein klares Signal schicken, dass sie nicht weiter verschleppen und blockieren dürfen – zumindest einzelnen Ländern, die das leider tun.

Ein paar Worte zur Situation im Kosovo: Die Visaliberalisierung ist hier das allerwichtigste Thema. Denn gerade die junge Generation im Kosovo erwartet sich, dass sie auch gleichberechtigter Teil der Europäischen Union, der europäischen Idee sein kann. Albin Kurti, der neue Regierungschef im Kosovo, braucht die Unterstützung für seine Reformen, die Perspektive geben sollen, die die soziale Entwicklung in dem Land organisieren – und aber auch den Kampf gegen Korruption. Gerade politische Stabilität ist eine Voraussetzung für eine erfolgreiche Zukunft des Landes, aber auch für einen erfolgreichen Dialog mit Belgrad. Nationalistische Töne sind hier – wie immer übrigens – fehl am Platz.

Ein Satz auch noch zu den Entwicklungen in Nordmazedonien: Zoran Zaev, der Regierungschef der Republik Nordmazedonien, hat mit den Nachbarländern und in seinem eigenen Land extrem viel weitergebracht – und gerade diese Reformen brauchen unsere Unterstützung. Ich halte die Blockade, die die Regierung in Sofia gerade inszeniert, für fundamental falsch. Es ist so jammerschade, dass damit so viele Chancen, die Bulgarien, Nordmazedonien, die Europa insgesamt haben könnte, verspielt werden.

Es braucht – und das ist mein Appell – gemeinsame Lösungen. Dieses Hervorziehen von Geschichte darf nicht der Parameter für die Zukunft sein. Unsere Zukunft – auch am Balkan – muss eine gemeinsame Zukunft sein, und daran müssen wir mit aller Kraft arbeiten und nicht blockieren.

 
  
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  Klemen Grošelj (Renew). – Gospa predsedujoča, kot del Zahodnega Balkana je Srbija in tudi celotna regija na pomembni prelomnici. Od odločitev in dejanj, sprejetih v času po epidemiji COVID-19, bo odvisna prihodnost tako regije kot tudi držav v njej.

Regija kljub težkim bremenom preteklosti sodi in je del Evrope. Nekako bi lahko rekli, članstvo v evropskih evroatlantskih integracijah je njen naravni razvojni cilj. Seveda pa to ne pomeni, da bo pot do tega cilja zaradi tega lažja ali enostavnejša.

Proces širitve EU je zahteven in je zahteven bil za vse današnje članice, saj zahteva od držav in njenih družb globoke družbene, politične in gospodarske reforme in spremembe.

Zato je ključni izziv, ki je pred današnjo Srbijo, predvsem, kako ponotranjiti, da vključevanje v EU in sam pogajalski proces nista tehnično-mehanična, ampak da zahtevata predvsem ponotranjenje ključnih političnih, gospodarskih in širših družbenih sprememb in reform.

Gre za reforme, ki niso namenjene samo članstvu v EU, ampak so predvsem potrebne za dvig blagostanja in splošne dobrobiti državljank in državljanov Srbije. Samo s temi reformami bo Srbija lahko v celoti in v polnosti izkoristila prednosti članstva, potem ko bo enkrat polnopravna članica.

Pri tem se je potrebno zavedati, da brez političnih reform ne bo trajnega gospodarskega uspeha. Polnokrvna moderna demokracija, utemeljena na kulturi dialoga, spoštovanju temeljnih vrednot, kot so vladavina prava, svoboda medijev, človekove in državljanske pravice, so temelji, na katerih se lahko države in družbe socialno, pravno in gospodarsko razcvetijo.

Ne gre torej za vprašanje tehničnega sprejemanja zakonodaje, ampak je ključnega pomena njeno dejansko udejanjanje v vsakdanjem življenju. Zato v bistvu pri tem ne gre za nikakršne zahteve EU, ampak za potrebe same Srbije.

Pri tem žal ni bližnjic, ampak je potrebno trdo delo in naporno iskanje širokega političnega in družbenega konsenza. Seveda obstajajo vabljive bližnjice, ki pa se ... (Predsedujoča je prekinila govorca.)

 
  
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  Jérôme Rivière (ID). – Madame la Présidente, mes chers collègues, s’il est un mal qui frappe cette assemblée et les institutions de l’Union européenne, c’est bien celui de l’aveuglement. Dans votre volonté frénétique d’élargir l’Union européenne aux pays des Balkans, volonté fédéraliste de soumission à l’OTAN, qui n’en demandait pas tant, vous oubliez l’un des dangers qui menacent notre civilisation.

Avant tout, comment passer sous silence le fait que le Kosovo n’est pas un pays reconnu par l’ensemble de la communauté internationale, ni même par toute l’Union européenne? En effet, cinq États membres, à savoir l’Espagne, la Grèce, Chypre, la Slovaquie et la Roumanie, ne reconnaissent pas le Kosovo.

Oubliées, pour la France, les promesses de campagne contre l’adhésion des Balkans à l’Union européenne faites par les députés français macronistes de Renew. Quel mensonge aux électeurs! Mais les Français s’en aperçoivent et sanctionneront ces serial menteurs. Plus largement, oubliées la corruption et la criminalité qui règnent dans les Balkans, qui seront autant de problèmes pour l’Union européenne. Oubliées les racines de ces peuples, arrachés à leur terre historique et parfois massacrés, comme le furent les Serbes. Oubliée l’islamisation rampante et agressive qui gangrène les pays instrumentalisés par la Turquie, adversaire déclaré des nations européennes. Face à la Turquie, je pense à la Grèce, qui fête aujourd’hui le 200e anniversaire de son indépendance, conquise à l’époque sur les Ottomans, avec l’aide notamment de la France. Oublié, enfin, le refus des peuples européens de ce projet qui broie les identités et écrase les classes moyennes.

La seule réponse aux problèmes que vous multipliez serait de prôner toujours plus d’Europe, toujours moins de frontières et finalement toujours plus de migrants. Telle la grenouille qui veut se faire aussi grosse que le bœuf, votre politique d’élargissement conduira cette Union européenne à la fin funeste de la fable de La Fontaine. Craignez que le Brexit n’en soit qu’un signe avant-coureur.

 
  
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  Tineke Strik (Verts/ALE). – Madam President, already 12 years ago the Commission recommended to start the negotiations with North Macedonia and since then the country has done a tremendous job regarding EU integration. I would like to thank the rapporteur and my shadow rapporteurs for their great cooperation.

The report rightly commends North Macedonian authorities for the deep and many, and sometimes painful, reforms and it encourages them to further improve the rule of law and anti-corruption policies, to support civil society, strengthen women’s rights and combat discrimination of minorities, including LGBTIQ, Roma and also the Bulgarian minority.

North Macedonia of course has to work on regional cooperation and resolving bilateral disputes, and the appointment of a special envoy to Bulgaria is a sign of willingness, but a solution requires cooperation from both sides. However, this bilateral conflict which is unfortunately ongoing cannot stand in the way of keeping our promise by kicking off the negotiations talk without further delay.

North Macedonian citizens have waited long enough. They deserve that we deliver. Let us grant them perspective. Let us prove our credibility.

 
  
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  Hermann Tertsch (ECR). – Señora presidenta, los Balcanes tienen más historia de la que pueden digerir. Esto lo decía Bismarck, creo, y, desde luego, vuelve a verse ahora, que estamos en un momento en el que se están bloqueando unos pasos absolutamente necesarios. Porque, mientras tenemos un agujero negro en los Balcanes Occidentales, tenemos una serie de potencias extranjeras que están entrando allí y cubriendo lo que debíamos haber cubierto nosotros hace tiempo. Tenemos a China, tenemos a Rusia y tenemos a Turquía dentro activamente, tomando posiciones, tomando las economías y tomando una fuerza que nos va a resultar después en una seria preocupación de seguridad.

Por eso, hay que hacer un llamamiento a la generosidad por parte de todos, a superar, por parte de todos ⸻como digo, los cuatro candidatos y los vecinos⸻, esas diferencias porque necesitamos cohesión, necesitamos seguridad y necesitamos que ese agujero negro deje de existir.

 
  
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  Dorien Rookmaker (NI). – Madam President, I believe that the enlargement strategy that takes into account the benefits, costs and risks of all parties involved, facilities prosperity and stability in the region, defends the geopolitical interests of the EU.

I am especially addressing my fellow members of the opposition on the left, right and in the back of this Parliament. We need our neighbouring countries to help us contain the ever-closer union aspirations of the leading parties in Parliament, especially when the EU terminates the veto right of Member States in the near future. Certain Member States are blocking the entrance into the EU of Albania, Kosovo and North Macedonia, which will only continue to create resentment, giving leeway to China and Russia.

I urge the Member States and politicians that are blocking this process to reconsider their stance. The EU needs to act fast and decisively if it wants to remain a credible factor in the Western Balkans.

 
  
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  Marion Walsmann (PPE). – Frau Präsidentin, liebe Kolleginnen und Kollegen! Die Zukunft von Nordmazedonien und des westlichen Balkans liegt in der Europäischen Union. In Zeiten der Unsicherheit, die durch diese verheerende Pandemie verursacht sind, verhilft eine europäische Perspektive diesen Ländern zu mehr Stabilität.

Als stellvertretende Vorsitzende der Delegation EU-Nordmazedonien und Verhandlungsführerin des Jean-Monnet-Dialogs bin ich der Meinung, dass die Fortsetzung dieses politischen Dialogs in der Sobranie essenziell ist. Das ist das richtige Instrument zur Stärkung der demokratischen Kultur und des demokratischen Handelns. Dadurch wird ein gesundes politisches Umfeld für die notwendigen Reformen und die Umsetzung der EU-Vorgaben geschaffen.

Lassen Sie uns die Konferenz zur Zukunft Europas als Gelegenheit nutzen, um Nordmazedonien und den westlichen Balkan mit ins Boot zu holen, indem wir sie in die Debatte einbeziehen. Wenn wir über die Zukunft Europas sprechen, dann müssen wir auch über die Zukunft des westlichen Balkans sprechen.

 
  
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  Tonino Picula (S&D). – Madam President, today we are sending once again a clear message of support for countries wishing to join the European Union. The future of Western Balkans remains within a united European Union and we encourage them to continue the path of reforms towards European Union laws, standards and values. We in the S&D Group particularly insist that all countries in the region uphold fundamental rights and the rule of law, defend the freedom of media and fight corruption. We are and we will remain a reliable voice for enlargement in this House, but we will not compromise on these issues.

At the same time, the European Union should live up to its commitments, and therefore preserve its credibility, which has been under pressure during the ongoing pandemic and because of persistent blockage in the Council. Accession talks with North Macedonia and Albania, as well as a visa-free regime for Kosovo, should be implemented without delay. Upholding our values means not opening new chapters with Serbia without clear progress related to democratic standards, minority rights and fundamental freedoms.

To conclude, our engagement and commitment to the European future of the Western Balkans should remain a priority for the Union, not just side policy. In the turbulent times we are living in, we must keep in mind that enlargement is the most effective foreign policy instrument the European Union has to promote our values of peace, democracy, fairness and prosperity.

 
  
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  Bernhard Zimniok (ID). – Frau Präsidentin, werte Kollegen! Die EU-Erweiterung auf dem Westbalkan dürfte heute nicht zur Debatte stehen. Der Balkan ist ein höchst fragiles Gebilde, auf dem die Feindseligkeiten lediglich ruhen und jeden Moment wieder ausbrechen können. Sich dieses zusätzliche Konfliktpotenzial in die EU zu holen, ist purer Wahnsinn. Aber auch darüber hinaus gibt es unzählige Gründe gegen diese erneute Erweiterung.

Die EU hat so viele hausgemachte und ungelöste Probleme, denen sie sich zunächst einmal widmen müsste. Die Westbalkanländer haben – trotz aller Finanzhilfen – nach wie vor bisher keine kompatiblen Rechtssysteme, die Korruption ist nach wie vor vorherrschend, und die Justiz ist nicht unabhängig. Millionen von illegalen Migranten wurden einfach in die EU durchgewunken. Laut den Vereinten Nationen ist der Balkan darüber hinaus noch der Hauptlieferant für alle Schusswaffen oder illegalen Schusswaffen in Europa.

Das ist alles nur die Spitze des Eisbergs. Die EU sollte sich deshalb dringend vorrangig der Bewältigung ihrer eigenen Probleme widmen, statt sich noch weitere aufzuhalsen.

 
  
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  Romeo Franz (Verts/ALE). – Frau Präsidentin, liebe Kolleginnen und Kollegen! Ich möchte mich bei meiner Kollegin für den exzellenten Bericht bedanken. Das Kosovo muss für seine Bestrebungen, in Zukunft ein EU—Mitglied zu werden, noch sehr viele Aufgaben erledigen. Dazu gehört natürlich auch, wie das Land mit seinen Minderheiten wie den Aschkali, den Roma und anderen umgeht und inwieweit es eine Inklusion und eine gleichberechtigte Teilhabe in allen Lebensbereichen für diese Menschen ermöglichen wird.

Die neue Kurti—Regierung wird sich nicht zuletzt auch in dieser Frage messen lassen. Aber die Bringschuld darf nicht nur einseitig gesehen werden – auch die EU muss jetzt bei der Visaliberalisierung liefern. Es kann nicht sein, dass das Kosovo als einziges Land auf dem Westbalkan von dieser Liberalisierung ausgenommen bleibt, obwohl es alle Bedingungen seit 2018 erfüllt hat. Wenn die EU nicht ihre Glaubwürdigkeit verlieren möchte und zur Stabilität des Kosovo beitragen möchte, muss sie diesbezüglich nun handeln. Gerade für die jungen Menschen wäre die Visabefreiung ein wichtiger Fortschritt.

 
  
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  Ivan Vilibor Sinčić (NI). – Poštovana predsjedavajuća, govoreći o zemljama jugoistočne Europe na njihovom putu u Europsku uniju pokazalo se jasno, u ovoj krizi, da im Europa sve manje ima za ponuditi.

Mogu li im se ponuditi demokratski standardi nakon što Europa ide u ubrzanu proceduru donošenja COVID putovnice, bez javne rasprave. Nažalost, vidio sam mnogo toga u hrvatskom parlamentu. Može li se ponuditi sloboda kretanja Schengena nakon uvođenja COVID putovnice, koja je sada minirana? To je opasan presedan koji može otići u diskriminaciju i segregaciju, jesu li to te europske vrijednosti? Već sada se u upravljanju ovom krizom, došlo do ozbiljnog potkopavanja ljudskih prava. Mogu li se tim zemljama ponoviti europski standardi, ako da, zašto onda Europska medicinska agencija odobrava cjepiva bez ikakvih nezavisnih studija, bez ikakvog znanja o dugoročnim efektima? Nažalost, to ono što danas vidimo.

U tom kontekstu odluka Ustavnog suda recimo Bosne i Hercegovine iz te jugoistočne Europe da je nošenje maski neustavno je napredna za brojne europske odluke i institucije.

 
  
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  Александър Александров Йорданов (PPE). – Г-жо Председател, г-н Комисар, Република Северна Македония не изпълнява договора с България и продължава антибългарската кампания. Все още не е осъден геноцидът над българите по време на комунистическия режим, продължава политиката на смяна на идентичността на починали българи, дейци на културата и образованието, борци за свобода, както и кражбата на българското културно историческо наследство. Това, г-н Кючюк, г-н Комисар, са престъпления, а не спор за историята.

В Скопие не се говори македонски език, а език на омразата срещу българите и България. Предлаганото от социалисти и зелени изменение II е скандално и обидно за България. Колеги, не го подкрепяйте, не обиждате моята страна. Уважаеми колеги, България желае да приемем Република Северна Македония в Европейския съюз, но след като тази страна се ваксинира срещу комунистическия корона вирус от миналото.

 
  
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  Δημήτρης Παπαδάκης (S&D). – Κυρία Πρόεδρε, ως Ευρωπαϊκό Κοινοβούλιο οφείλουμε να στείλουμε τα σωστά μηνύματα προς όλες τις κατευθύνσεις και ιδιαίτερα προς τον λαό της Σερβίας. Θέλω να τονίσω ότι η ευρωπαϊκή προοπτική της χώρας θα αλλάξει τα μέχρι σήμερα δεδομένα, θα επηρεάσει θετικά τον τρόπο με τον οποίο οι πολιτικοί πολιτεύονται και συμπεριφέρονται στο εσωτερικό της χώρας και θα δώσει ελπίδα για ένα καλύτερο μέλλον σε όλους τους πολίτες της.

Είναι πολύ σημαντικό οι μεταρρυθμίσεις στη Σερβία να προωθηθούν με διαφάνεια και διάλογο με όλους τους ενδιαφερομένους, με εμπλοκή όλων των πολιτικών δυνάμεων της χώρας και της κοινωνίας των πολιτών. Με αυτό τον τρόπο, θα επέλθουν θετικές αλλαγές στην καθημερινότητα όλων των κατοίκων της χώρας, εξασφαλίζοντας νέες θέσεις εργασίας, με την απαραίτητη προστασία για τους μη προνομιούχους της κοινωνίας. Αυτό είναι πολύ σημαντικό, κυρίως για τη νεολαία, έτσι ώστε να παραμείνει στη χώρα και να πιστέψει σε ένα καλύτερο μέλλον. Οι περαιτέρω προοδευτικές μεταρρυθμίσεις στη Σερβία θα τη φέρουν ακόμη πιο κοντά στην Ευρωπαϊκή Ένωση, με αποτέλεσμα να συνεχιστεί απρόσκοπτα η ενταξιακή της πορεία.

Αναγνωρίζω ότι οι δυσκολίες παραμένουν και χρειάζεται ακόμη πολλή δουλειά και έμπρακτη εφαρμογή των συμφωνηθέντων. Ως Προοδευτική Συμμαχία Σοσιαλιστών και Δημοκρατών, θα συνεχίσουμε να αγωνιζόμαστε για τη δημοκρατική λογοδοσία, το κράτος δικαίου, την ελευθερία των μέσων ενημέρωσης, την καταπολέμηση της διαφθοράς, και θα συνεχίσουμε να προασπιζόμαστε τη διασφάλιση και εφαρμογή των θεμελιωδών ανθρωπίνων δικαιωμάτων. Καταληκτικά, υποστηρίζω πλήρως την ευρωπαϊκή προοπτική της Σερβίας· αναμένουμε να γίνουν γρήγορα βήματα για να βρεθεί όσο το δυνατόν πιο σύντομα εντός του ευρωπαϊκού οικοδομήματος.

 
  
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  Clara Ponsatí Obiols (NI). – Madam President, on Kosovo the European Union needs a unique position, but five Member States are still opposing recognition. Four are neighbours of the region, but the fifth? It’s Spain. Why? What is Spain’s problem with Kosovo? Colleagues, Spain’s problem is not about Kosovo: it’s the ‘C’ problem. ‘C’ as in Catalonia.

In a landmark decision on Kosovo, the International Court of Justice ruled that international law does not prohibit unilateral declarations of independence. This applies to Kosovo, but it also applies to Catalonia.

Spain’s tantrum about Kosovo expresses their fear to set a precedent that threatens their sacred unity. The EU cannot have a unique position on Kosovo because Spain is obsessed that unity is more sacred than democracy and human rights. The unity of Spain is not sacred! It is, with the crown of the corrupt Borbón family, an imposition from the political will of General Franco, the only Fascist dictator never defeated in Europe. It is time to move on. Spain must recognise Kosovo and let Catalans decide about their future.

 
  
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  Miriam Lexmann (PPE). – Madam President, let me first thank my colleague Vlado Bilčík for his hard work on this file, and for vigorously supporting Serbia’s path to the EU.

The creeping malign influence of the Chinese Communist Party and other authoritarian regimes across the Western Balkans is increasingly worrying. In particular, Chinese investments are emblematic of its growing malign influence in Serbia and elsewhere in the Western Balkans.

Chinese investment, as highlighted in the case of several heavy industry projects in Smederevo, Bor and Kostolac, as well as the tyre plant in Zrenjanin, lack transparency and sustainability, cause serious environmental damage, have negative impact on labour rights and have a corrosive effect on democratic governance. This is why it is important that the European Union takes this malign influence seriously, and works with the governments and civil society to help the countries of the Western Balkans to become more resilient to the negative impact of Chinese investments as part of their EU accession process.

 
  
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  Петър Витанов (S&D). – Г-жо Председател, по доклада за Република Северна Македония не желая да се конфронтирам с колегите от своята парламентарна група, защото досега винаги сме водили битките рамо до рамо, но днес тук мога да говоря само като българин.

Част от предложените изменения задълбочават съществуването на един проблем. Вземането на страна пречи на диалога и изостря конфронтацията. То се ползва от една страна в България от крайни фашизирани и националистически партии в предизборна кампания, а в Македония за допълнителен натиск върху всички онези хора, които имат българско самосъзнание. Ние сме „за“ напредъка на Република Северна Македония, но той минава само през зачитане и през уважение на добросъседските отношения. Българо-македонския диалог има нужда от динамо, не от динамит.

 
  
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  Andor Deli (NI). – Tisztelt Elnök Asszony! Biztos Úr! Ha ismerjük Szerbia jelentőségét a térségben, akkor tudnunk kell azt is, hogy a csatlakozás késleltetése ellentétes az EU saját érdekeivel is. Ezért mi a Fidesz delegációban mindig is azon dolgoztunk, hogy Szerbia a lehető legrövidebb időn belül az EU teljes jogú tagjává váljon. Ennek ellenére a baloldali képviselők által benyújtott módosítók miatt a jelentés szövege nélkülözi a kellő tárgyilagosságot. Megkérdőjelezi, például a tavalyi választások legitimitását, a szerbiai parlament összetételét, miközben ezekről a témákról Szerbia polgárai már határozott véleményt nyilvánítottak a választásokon. A jelentés kritikus hangon szól a szerb egészségügyről és a járvány kezeléséről, miközben oltások tekintetében Szerbia messze lekörözte azokat a tagállamokat, ahonnan ezek a kritikák érkeznek.

Inkább a saját udvarukban kellene sepregetni. Néhány uniós tagállam, köztük Magyarország már megtapasztalhatta, hogy az EP-jelentéseket a politikai ellenfelekkel való leszámolás eszközeiként használják. Azonban, ha ezt a módszert egy uniós tagjelölt ország ellen alkalmazzák, az nagyon rossz üzenet. Ezért a mi számunkra, a Fidesz képviselői számára elfogadhatatlan a Szerbiáról szóló jelentés.

 
  
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  Λουκάς Φουρλάς (PPE). – Κυρία Πρόεδρε, κύριε Επίτροπε, επιτρέψτε μου να αρχίσω ευχόμενος χρόνια πολλά στην Ελλάδα και στους Έλληνες, που γιορτάζουν σήμερα τα 200 χρόνια από την Ελληνική Επανάσταση η οποία οδήγησε σε ένα ελεύθερο ελληνικό κράτος.

Ο σεβασμός των ευρωπαϊκών ιδανικών και αξιών αποτελεί βασική προϋπόθεση για ένα ευρωπαϊκό κράτος. Υποστηρίζουμε πλήρως την ευρωπαϊκή προοπτική της Σερβίας και χαιρετίζουμε το γεγονός ότι αποτελεί κοινό στρατηγικό στόχο της κυβέρνησης αλλά και όλων των πολιτικών δυνάμεων της χώρας. Η ένταξη της Σερβίας στην Ευρωπαϊκή Ένωση θα είναι προς όφελος όλων μας.

Θέλω να τονίσω ότι υποστηρίζουμε το άνοιγμα περισσότερων κεφαλαίων στις διαπραγματεύσεις μεταξύ της Ευρωπαϊκής Ένωσης και της Σερβίας, γεγονός που θα δώσει πρόσθετο δυναμισμό στη διαδικασία και επιπλέον κίνητρα και ενθάρρυνση στους Σέρβους πολίτες. Στην έκθεση προόδου καταγράφεται η κοινή βούληση όλων των πλευρών να επιταχυνθούν οι διαδικασίες των διαπραγματεύσεων, ώστε να καταφέρουμε να δούμε τη Σερβία σύντομα εκεί όπου ανήκει, στους κόλπους της Ευρωπαϊκής Ένωσης.

 
  
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  Kinga Gál (NI). – Tisztelt Elnök Asszony! Biztos Úr! Meggyőződésem, hogy a Nyugat-Balkán stabilitásának garanciája az európai integráció. És az EU érdeke egy prosperáló és saját határait hatékonyan védeni képes nyugat-balkáni térség. Ezért szorgalmazom a csatlakozási folyamat felgyorsítását. Az országjelentések közül, ma sok mindent hallottunk itt ezekről, egy másik szempontra hívnám fel a figyelmet. A szerbiai jelentés ezúttal az eddigiektől eltérően feltűnően kritikus, egyoldalú hangot üt meg a jobboldali-konzervatív kormánnyal rendelkező Szerbia esetében. Pedig az ország a térségben stabilizáló tényező, békés rendezésre egyértelműen törekszik.

A szomszédaival való kapcsolatok terén jelentős előrelépéseket tett, derekasan védi az Európai Unió külső határait, és a világjárvány ellenére gazdasága kiválóan teljesít. Egyik úttörője a Covid elleni átoltottságnak. Ugyanakkor, megnézve alaposan a többi jelentést, a baloldali vezetéssel rendelkező Észak-Macedónia, Albánia, vagy Koszovó tekintetében a jelentések sokkal megengedőbbek, amiben az Európai Parlamentben oly gyakran alkalmazott kettős mércét látom újra. Ez eltérő mércékkel mérés. A politikai alapú hozzáállás nem segíti a Nyugat-Balkán stabilitását. Az Unió elfogadottságát kérdőjelezzük meg ezekben az országokban.

 
  
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  Olivér Várhelyi, Member of the Commission. – Madam President, I thank all the Members of this House for the continued very strong support for the European perspective of the whole Western Balkans region. Now more than ever we must show that the EU will continue to stand with our Western Balkan partners and to support the whole region during this pandemic.

The future of the Western Balkan region lies in the European Union. It is not only their interest, it is our interest. They are surrounded by EU Member States, they are integrated and getting even more integrated into our economies but also into our societies. The region is clearly committed to an EU path. Now it is time for us also to deliver. As you know this Commission is very heavily committed to deliver on this promise and we need the support of the Member States, we need the support of this House, to be able to move on and move fast.

 
  
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  Ana Paula Zacarias, Presidente em exercício do Conselho. – Senhora Presidente, Senhoras e Senhores Deputados, Senhor Comissário, agradeço—vos este debate proveitoso e pelo empenhamento construtivo do Parlamento Europeu na região dos Balcãs Ocidentais. Gostaria também de manifestar a minha sincera gratidão pelo excelente trabalho e pelo empenho dos relatores, de todos estes relatórios tão importantes que aqui foram hoje apresentados.

Neste ano tão difícil, marcado pela pandemia, continuaremos a trabalhar em todas as áreas para apoiar os parceiros dos Balcãs Ocidentais no seu percurso europeu.

A realização de reformas é crucial. Os progressos realizados estão a ser cuidadosamente acompanhados e incentivamos os dirigentes políticos a continuar a trabalhar com entusiasmo e empenho para o bem dos seus cidadãos, para assegurar um diálogo construtivo na região, o seu desenvolvimento económico e social e o seu percurso de adesão à União.

Posso assegurar-vos que a Presidência continuará a trabalhar nesta área, continuará a congratular-se com todos os progressos que forem sendo alcançados pelos países candidatos, apesar das diferentes circunstâncias e dos difíceis momentos que atravessamos. Reiteramos o nosso compromisso com o processo de adesão dos Balcãs Ocidentais à União.

Todos sabemos que este é um caminho difícil, complexo. Sabemos que há ainda muito para fazer em termos das necessárias reformas, particularmente na área das reformas da administração, dos sistemas judiciais, da luta contra a corrupção, no respeito pelo Estado de Direito e pelos valores fundamentais, mas este diálogo é fundamental para a União e para os países dos Balcãs.

A pandemia veio demonstrar a importância e o valor de nos mantermos unidos e de respondermos em conjunto a estes desafios comuns que são de todos nós.

 
  
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  Die Präsidentin. – Die gemeinsame Aussprache ist geschlossen.

Die Abstimmung findet heute, Donnerstag, 25. März 2021, statt.

Schriftliche Erklärungen (Artikel 171)

 
  
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  Dominique Bilde (ID), par écrit. – D’une manière générale, je ne suis pas favorable à ce que la reconnaissance du Kosovo comme un État indépendant soit une condition sine qua non imposée à la Serbie en vue d’une éventuelle adhésion à l’Union européenne – quelle que soit l’opinion que l’on porte quant à cet élargissement sur le fond. En effet, à l’heure actuelle, cinq États membres de l’Union européenne ne reconnaissent toujours pas le Kosovo, dont l’Espagne. Dans le monde, ce sont des puissances comme l’Inde, la Russie, ou encore la Chine qui maintiennent une position similaire. Par ailleurs, l’actualité récente ne plaide pas en faveur de la normalisation des relations avec la Serbie, en dépit des accords de Washington signés sous l’égide de Donald Trump. En témoigne la déclaration récente d’Albin Kurti, à nouveau Premier ministre kosovar, à Euronews, par laquelle il affirmait qu’il voterait favorablement à un éventuel référendum portant sur l’unification de l’Albanie et du Kosovo. Enfin, l’attitude de la Turquie lors de la polémique relative à l’installation d’une représentation diplomatique kosovare à Jérusalem, dans la foulée des accords de Washington susvisés, a mis en évidence l’ingérence croissante d’Erdogan dans les Balkans.

 
  
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  Guido Reil (ID), schriftlich. – Nach dem Internationalen Währungsfonds ist ein Narco‑Staat ein Land, „in dem alle rechtmäßigen Institutionen von der Macht und dem Reichtum des illegalen Drogenhandels durchdrungen sind“. Albanien ist ein Narco‑Staat, denn in diesem Land sind Drogenhandel und politische Macht sehr verstrickt. Drogenbosse sind mit der politischen Elite vernetzt und beeinflussen maßgeblich die Entwicklung Albaniens. Dieser Narco‑Staat versorgt unter anderem Deutschland mit Cannabis und Kokain. Auch der regierenden Sozialistischen Partei werden Korruption und Verbindungen zum organisierten Verbrechen vorgeworfen. Viele junge Leuten sind gefangen in einem Netz von Armut und Korruption. Sie haben keine Hoffnung auf Verbesserung und wollen das Land verlassen. Es gibt nirgendwo so viele EU‑Anhänger wie in Albanien. Die meisten Albaner wollen einen EU-Beitritt. Ich glaube aber nicht, dass ein Beitritt in unserem Interesse ist. Korruption und kriminelle Machenschaften werden belohnt. Ein Beitritt führt zu noch mehr Armutsmigration. Darüber hinaus wird ein Beitritt den brain drain noch verschärfen. Es gibt viele Beispiele: Rumänien, Kroatien, Bulgarien. Übrigens wird der Grüne Deal die bestehenden politischen Gräben zwischen westeuropäischen und osteuropäischen Staaten noch vertiefen. Wir sollen über andere Lösungen nachdenken.

 
  
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  Θεόδωρος Ζαγοράκης (PPE), γραπτώς. – Το μέλλον των Δυτικών Βαλκανίων βρίσκεται στην Ευρώπη. Η πλειοψηφία των πολιτικών δυνάμεων αυτού του Κοινοβουλίου συμφωνεί με αυτή την προοπτική. Κάθε χώρα και κάθε υποψηφιότητα όμως θα κριθεί ξεχωριστά. Η πορεία των μεταρρυθμίσεων και η εκπλήρωση των κριτηρίων ένταξης προφανώς διαφέρει από χώρα σε χώρα. Πρέπει να δώσουμε στήριξη στις υποψήφιες χώρες των Βαλκανίων· αλλά και οι υποψήφιες χώρες οφείλουν να αναλάβουν τις αναγκαίες δεσμεύσεις και να υλοποιήσουν τις απαραίτητες μεταρρυθμίσεις. Οι σχέσεις καλής γειτονίας είναι καθοριστικής σημασίας για την πορεία των ενταξιακών διαπραγματεύσεων. Πολλοί ζητούν να ξεπεράσουμε τις περιφερειακές διαφορές και το δύσκολο, κάποιες φορές, παρελθόν και να επικεντρωθούμε στο μέλλον. Αυτό, όμως, δεν μπορεί να γίνει εις βάρος της ιστορίας. Εάν δεν επιλυθούν οι εκκρεμείς διαφορές, εάν απλώς «κρύψουμε τα προβλήματα κάτω από το χαλί», είναι βέβαιο ότι θα βρεθούμε αντιμέτωποι με νέες διενέξεις στο μέλλον.

 
  
 

(Die Sitzung wird um 13.02 Uhr unterbrochen)

 
  
  

PRESIDENZA DELL'ON. FABIO MASSIMO CASTALDO
Vicepresidente

 
Última actualización: 22 de julio de 2021Aviso jurídico - Política de privacidad