M.Roth. The future of the Western Balkans is at stake

2022-10-07 | Political initiatives, EU integration

Russia’s war of aggression against Ukraine has been a wake-up call for the EU from its geopolitical slumber. In the midst of the conflict with Putin’s Russia, the EU has rediscovered one of its most successful instruments: enlargement policy – which has been a driving force for peace, democracy, rule of law and prosperity in Europe. Now, this success story needs to be continued in Eastern Europe and in the Western Balkans. The return of war to Europe has made clear to us all that the stabilisation and integration of our neighbours to the East and South-East is first and foremost in our own interest. To achieve this, the enlargement process has to be reformed in such a way that the citizens in candidate countries are able to benefit from the initial advantages of EU membership even before formal accession.

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