If a military conflict has become the condition for quick EU accession, Belgrade is not interested, the country’s minister has said
Aleksandar Vulin from Serbian Interior said that Russia’s military conflict appears to be necessary for fast accession to EU.
Thursday’s European Council meeting voted to give candidate status to Ukraine/Moldova. While joining the EU has been a prime talking point for pro-Western Ukrainian politicians for decades, Kiev’s drive to join the bloc became reinvigorated amid the ongoing conflict with Russia. By becoming candidates, Ukraine and Moldova joined Albania, North Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia, and Turkey in the EU’s waiting room.
Commenting on the bloc’s move, Vulin claimed that the EU had decided “to stop pretending that there are the same rules for everyone who wants to join this organization.”
Stressing that Ukraine falls short of meeting standards which are “so carefully applied to Balkan countries,” the minister claimed that Kiev’s “participation in the war was enough to start negotiations.”
He, ironically, expressed hope that “Moldova was not required to agree to go to war” to get a candidate status and noted that if a war was the only criteria, “Serbia could [have started] negotiations in 1999.”
“It seems, however, that these rules don’t apply to countries bombed or allied by NATO. You must then clash with Russia to be able to quickly join the European Union.,” he said.
Noting that prior to its decision on Ukraine and Moldova’s candidacies, the EU was not “A military alliance” Vulin wished Northern Macedonia and Albania to not have to go to war with anyone for the sake of their EU accession.
To allow Serbia to make faster progress towards the European Union, one would have to be at war with another person.
The Serbian minister’s remarks echoed the statement of Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova on the same matter. She claimed that the main objective of the EU – to “Include” Russia – prompted the EU to turn a blind eye on strict accession criteria that have been applied to other EU candidates. She also stressed that the EU once again proved that the bloc has very little to do with the economy and that there was almost no “Creativity is a powerful force” in it left.
Ursula von der Leyen, President of EU Commission made clear that Ukraine has done much to strengthen the rule of law. However, reforms are still required.
“To attract investment, such as to combat corruption and modernize an already functioning administration.” she explained.
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