European Parliament President David Sassoli has supported the integration of the Western Balkan countries into the European Union. Sassoli has said that EU enlargement would be a positive step towards peace and prosperity.
“Enlargement can bring great benefits to both the region and Europe as a whole, helping to ensure a stable, prosperous and peaceful continent.” said Sassoli, according to reports by German Funke Mediengruppe.
However, when the countries of the Western Balkans will join the union depends on the fulfillment of the conditions
“Reforms have yet to be completed in each of these countries.” said Sassoli, adding that the European Union must also keep its promises and recognize progress.
The EU is already holding accession talks with Montenegro and Serbia, while Albania and northern Macedonia are official candidates. Northern Macedonia last month received the support of Austria, the Czech Republic and Slovenia to start talks with the EU. Bosnia and Herzegovina and Kosovo have so far been considered potential candidates for negotiations.
The EU enlargement process has faced major challenges, some of them rooted in ethnic divisions in the Western Balkans. Unanimity is required from all EU members for the adoption of the negotiating framework.