Skip to main content

Home/ European Union/ Group items tagged kosovo enlargement serbia

Rss Feed Group items tagged

Prof. Dr  Wolfgang Schumann

10.12.10 The US assessment of EU-policy towards Kosovo and Serbia - insights from Wiki... - 0 views

  • The EU's "low profile" mission in Kosovo and the "fatigue" shown by Europeans on the independence issue are failing to address the increasing threat of partition in the northern part of Kosovo, a fresh set of US cables released by WikiLeaks shows just as Kosovars head to the polling stations on Sunday (12 December).
  • With five EU member states still not having recognised the independence of Kosovo and a certain "fatigue" emerging on the issue, US diplomats fear that Europe will cave in to Serb pressure for the northern part of the country to be split off - a development which could trigger ethnic violence.
Prof. Dr  Wolfgang Schumann

22.11.10: Jeremic (Serbia): Silent pro_eu majority in the Western Balkans might become ... - 0 views

  • Minister of Foreign Affairs Vuk Jeremic said in London on Thursday, that unless the fatigue caused by EU enlargement is overcome, the silent pro-European majority in the Western Balkans might become a silent minority. Speaking at the London School of Economics, Jeremic reiterated that Serbia is absolutely committed to EU membership as a strategic goal and Belgrade is open for dialogue and compromise with Pristina, acceptable for both sides. The dialogue should begin as soon as possible and on less controversial issues, in order to gradually shift to more delicate ones, the Minister explained.
Prof. Dr  Wolfgang Schumann

17.11.10: 'Wrong answers' on Kosovo could block Serbia's EU candidacy - 0 views

  • When EU enlargement commissioner Stefan Fule hands his 'questionnaire' over to the Serbian authorities during his visit to Belgrade next week, the recipients may wish to take a step back and reflect carefully before they sit down to formulate their responses. Serbia's replies to the list of questions will largely determine the European Commission's assessment of the country's readiness to become an EU candidate, and a few 'wrong' answers on Kosovo could easily compromise the process.
  • Either the European Commission or the Council of Ministers could advise against granting Belgrade candidate status or the decision could be put on hold until Belgrade has clarified contested positions, according to EU officials dealing with Serbia. The questionnaire itself is 'status neutral' regarding Kosovo, and takes into account UN Resolution 1244, which set up an international military presence in Kosovo in 1999. "Serbian answers should be status neutral and respect UN Resolution 1244 as well," an EU member state diplomat told WAZ.EUobserver. "That means Serbia will not be forced to recognise Kosovo's independence in the questionnaire but Belgrade should accept in the answers the reality that Kosovo is not under Serbian sovereignty or control."
  • "Some important EU countries have already signalled they will veto Serbia's candidate status if Belgrade tries to use the questionnaire to affirm sovereignty and territorial integrity in Kosovo," an EU diplomat warned. A positive opinion by the commission is usually essential for an aspiring country to become an official candidate. The only exception so far has been Greece, which became a candidate in spite of a negative assessment by the Brussels-based executive.
  • ...1 more annotation...
  • "It is imaginable that the commission gives a positive opinion on Serbia without Ratko Mladic being arrested," said a source in the EU Council of Ministers. "But it is unimaginable, after the council conclusion last month in Luxembourg, that the EU [member states] will find the unanimity required to grant candidate status to Serbia without Ratko Mladic being arrested and transferred to the Hague tribunal prison in Scheveningen."
Prof. Dr  Wolfgang Schumann

09.11.10: Will Negotiation Slot for Kosovo be used? - 0 views

  • When UN made new Kosovo related decision on September 2010 it was believed that resolution would enable a dialogue for resolving this frozen conflict. With minimal preconditions new direct talks between Belgrad and Pristina and a possible deal between local stakeholders could open the way for sustainable solution. However resent events have have resulted in stalemate: President of separatist Kosovo government resigned and dissolution of the government itself have put the focus in Kosovo on next elections which will be held in December 2010. Meanwhile also Serbia starts soon preparations for its next next elections, due by spring 2012. Thus there is a narrow negotiation slot between the time when a new Kosovo government takes office and to end successfully before the Serbian election campaign makes any compromise impossible. The core question is if there is political will to start talks with the aim of reaching as comprehensive a compromise settlement as possible.
Prof. Dr  Wolfgang Schumann

04.11.10: A first look at the European Commission progress reports on enlargement due t... - 0 views

  • "The EU's enlargement process has gained new momentum since the [European] Commission adopted its last progress reports, notwithstanding the many other challenges the Union faces." These are the opening words of the European Commission's Enlargement Strategy, which will be officially presented next Wednesday (10 November) together with the progress reports for the Western Balkan counties, Turkey and Iceland. WAZ.EUobserver has seen the report in advance.
  • "All need to focus on good governance, improving the rule of law, speeding up economic reform and improving their capacity to adopt and implement the acquis. Several complex problems remain, including the governance of Bosnia and Herzegovina and the name question concerning the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia. Open bilateral issues remain and differences over Kosovo's status have held up regional co-operation," the strategy underlines.
Prof. Dr  Wolfgang Schumann

23.10.10: EU to move ahead on Serbia accession, add tough conditions - 0 views

  • EU foreign ministers meeting in Luxembourg on Monday (25 October) will invite the European Commission to submit its opinion on Serbia's application for EU membership. But the ministers' conclusions, seen by WAZ.EUobserver, are to say bluntly that Serbia cannot go further toward EU accession without the arrest of war crimes suspects Ratko Mladic and Goran Hadzic and a constructive approach in the upcoming dialogue with Kosovo.
  • After two nights of long and tiring talks, the representatives of 26 EU countries and the Netherlands on Friday agreed the final text of the ministers' communique. The compromise consists of several elements: Ministers will voice strong support for Serbian president Boris Tadic; they will say Belgrade's attitude toward Kosovo is a key condition for further Serbian EU integration; and they will make clear Serbia cannot obtain official EU candidate status unless all EU member states, including the Netherlands, agree on a positive assessment of its co-operation with the Hague War Crimes Tribunal (ICTY), based on ICTY chief prosecutor Serge Brammertz' reports.
Prof. Dr  Wolfgang Schumann

24.09.10: Kosovo in New York - 0 views

  • After Bulgarian Prime Minister Boiko Borissov took his turn among a succession of heads of state and government to have talks with United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon at the start of the General Assembly’s new season, the UN’s news service said that Kosovo had topped the agenda, specifically the prospects for talks between Belgrade and Priština.Given hopes in diplomatic circles that on the sidelines of the General Assembly talkfest, an arrangement could be brokered to open negotiations between Serbia and Kosovo, the topic of the Borissov-Ban discussions was hardly a surprise – especially given Bulgaria’s desire to take the lead in helping to get the Western Balkans on an even keel.
  • These developments all preceded what many hoped would be a turning point in New York – a scheduled September 23 meeting between EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton and  Tadić, at which – or so it was hoped – there would be some agreement on starting an EU-brokered set of talks between Belgrade and Priština, including a starting date for the dialogue.On September 20, Ashton met Kosovo prime minister Hashim Thaçi. Media in Priština said that Thaçi had told Ashton that Kosovo was prepared to talk to Serbia about matters of mutual interest, but with the issues of Kosovo’s status decidedly off the agenda.
Prof. Dr  Wolfgang Schumann

10.09.10: Internal discussions in Serbia on UN adoption of Kosovo Resolution - 0 views

  • Belgrade has praised the UN General Assembly's adoption of a resolution on Kosovo that calls for dialogue between the state and Serbia. Serbian Foreign Minister Vuk Jeremic said the decision on Thursday night was an important move as it ended the process Serbia had started by requesting a legal opinion from the International Court of Justice, ICJ, on Kosovo's 2008 declaration of independence.
  • Some opposition parties in Serbia were quick to label the adoption "a defeat and shame for the Serbian people". Dragan Todorovic from the opposition Serbian Radical Party, SRS, called Thursday's adoption the "most shameful and hardest hit" that Serbia had suffered in its history. "Everyone who watched the session could see how Serbia has lost Kosovo, for which it has been fighting for generations in only one way," Todorovic told Balkan Insight.
Prof. Dr  Wolfgang Schumann

09.09.10: Serbia and EU reach breakthrough on Kosovo resolution - 0 views

  • Eleventh-hour talks between the EU and Serbia have seen Belgrade accept an EU-friendly draft resolution on the thorny question of Kosovo ahead of a United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) vote on the text in New York on Thursday (9 September). "This draft resolution will now be a resolution put forward by 28 European countries. All 27 EU member states and Serbia will be co-sponsoring this draft resolution," EU foreign affairs chief Catherine Ashton said in a communique out late on Wednesday.
  • The new resolution also "welcomes the readiness of the EU to facilitate the process of dialogue," effectively shifting the venue for future talks from the United Nations, where 122 out of 192 members do not recognise Kosovo, to the EU sphere, where five out of 27 members do not recognise it.
Prof. Dr  Wolfgang Schumann

08.09.10: EU should facilitate Kosovo-Serbia talks, show new muscle - 0 views

  • A rare combination of events offers the EU the opportunity to help Serbia and Kosovo resolve their differences, establish relations and unblock their paths to further European integration. The 22 July International Court of Justice (ICJ) opinion that found Kosovo's declaration of independence violated no international law or UN Resolution, a September discussion in the UN General Assembly on Kosovo, an invitation to mediate by EU High Representative Catherine Ashton, and unprecedented domestic support for Prime Minister Hashim
  • Possibly, it only wants talks that discuss Kosovo's status, inherently delaying other countries' decisions to join the 69 states that have already recognised. But this delaying tactic is not going to work, and there will be no EU facilitated dialogue if Serbia does not accept to sit down with Kosovo as an equal. The encouraging news is that some high level officials in Serbia seem to recognise this. They are interested in moving forward with their EU candidacy and feel Kosovo as an albatross holding them back. They want to find mutually acceptable solutions with Pristina which could pave the way for recognition.
Prof. Dr  Wolfgang Schumann

31.08.10: EU tells Serbia to give up Kosovo 'last battle' - 0 views

  • Serbia has tabled an initiative to push through a resolution in the UN General Assembly declaring unilateral secession by Kosovo as "unacceptable". But major EU countries warned Belgrade that it should seek solutions to its problems in Brussels, not New York. Beta agency, EurActiv's partner in Serbia, reports.
  • Unhappy with the International Court of Justice's ruling that Kosovo's independence declaration did not violate international law (EurActiv 23/07/10), Serbia has taken the issue to the UN, hoping for a more sympathetic approach from its members to the issue of territorial integrity. The draft resolution calls for fresh talks on all outstanding issues, but also condemns Kosovo's unilateral declaration of independence. Belgrade plans to get it adopted at a session which starts in mid-September. As reported by international agencies, the EU has warned Belgrade that insisting on the resolution could harm relations with Brussels and eventually its aspirations to join the EU.
Prof. Dr  Wolfgang Schumann

01.09.10: Final agreement between Serbia and EU over Kosovo in Brussels? - 0 views

  • Serbia President Boris Tadic agreed yesterday with British Foreign Minister William Hague that ‘Brussels is the address at which a compromise over resolution that Serbia has filed to the UN General Assembly should be looked for’, ‘Blic’ learns from High Serbian source. The same source also says that Hague has not requested from Tadic directly that Serbia withdraws its resolution, but expressed doubt that a resolution can be amended.
Prof. Dr  Wolfgang Schumann

30.08.10: Serbia open to EU compromise on Kosovo - 0 views

  • Cracks in Serbia's long-uncompromising position on Kosovo appeared on the weekend as President Boris Tadic said his country is open to discussing a compromise over its UN General Assembly resolution. In July, following a ruling by the International Court of Justice that Kosovo's 2008 unilateral declaration of independence was not in violation of international law, Belgrade submitted a resolution with the General Assembly declaring "unilateral secession is not an acceptable way to solve territorial issues" and calling for a "mutually acceptable solution to all open issues".
  • Last week, German foreign minister Guido Westerwelle bluntly told Serbia: "Kosovar independence is a reality," and: "The map of southeastern Europe has been laid down and completed." He also suggested that Belgrade's acquiescence on this fact was necessary before Serbia could join the EU, despite five existing member states refusing to recognise the breakaway region.
Prof. Dr  Wolfgang Schumann

17.08.10: Early warnings to Serbia about Kosovo may come true - 0 views

  • If Serbia does not let go of Kosovo, it will ultimately lose on two fronts - both the contested strip of land as well as the prospect of EU membership. This prediction, made by American diplomat Richard Holbrooke in Brussels more than three years ago, still rings true today.
  • "Serbia hasn't gained anything on Kosovo in the EU in recent years. It has only lost a lot of the support for speeding up its own European integration. Patience and understanding for Serbian politics towards Kosovo is evaporating," a diplomat from the European side of the Contact Group, which brings together the US, Germany, France, Italy, the UK and Russia, told WAZ.EUobserver.
Prof. Dr  Wolfgang Schumann

26.07.10: Push for Serbia EU accession speed-up in wake of Kosovo court ruling - 0 views

  • A number of EU states are in favour of speeding up Serbia's EU accession process in the wake of Belgrade's loss at the International Court of Justice over Kosovo's declaration of independence. The foreign ministers of Italy, Slovakia and Austria pushed for such a move heading into Monday's meeting of EU foreign ministers, the first time EU governments discussed the implications of the ICJ's finding last week.
  • Ahead of the day's meeting, Italian foreign policy chief Franco Frattini told reporters: "At a time when we should understand Serbia's disappointment ... we need to help a sincere pro-European like [Serbian President Boris] Tadic with very positive message." On 22 July, the International Court of Justice in the Hague opined that Kosovo had not violated international law by declaring independence in 2008. "It could not have been today ... but the very positive message would be the handing over of Serbia's EU application to the European Commission," he said, referring to the next step in the process, in which the Council, representing the member states, request an evaluation of the application. "Belgrade deserves a message of encouragement, such as the European path remaining open with no further preconditions," he said.
Prof. Dr  Wolfgang Schumann

22.07.10: Kosovo independence no violation of law, finds International Court of Justice - 0 views

  • By a 10-4 majority, the judges of the International Court of Justice on Thursday ruled that the unilateral declaration of independence by the then-Serbian province of Kosovo did not violate international law. In something of a fudge that will leave no one happy, the non-binding ruling found that as there are no provisions in international law restricting independence declarations, such as that pronounced by Kosovo on 17 February, 2008, the new state is neither abiding by international law nor in violation.
  • Serbian President Boris Tadic reacted to the ruling by saying: "Serbia of course will never recognise the unilaterally proclaimed independence of Kosovo because it believes that unilateral, ethnically motivated secession is not in accordance with the principles of the United Nations." However, Mr Tadic went on to say that Belgrade would now seek another UN resolution in order relaunch talks over Kosovo, and Serbian foreign minister Vuk Jeremic urged Serbs in northern Kosovo to not be provoked into violence.
Prof. Dr  Wolfgang Schumann

06.07.10: Van Rompuy's Balkan visit focuses on Kosovo - 0 views

  • On his first tour of the Western Balkan, European Council President Herman Van Rompuy condemned the recent violence in Kosovo and called for restraint and dialogue. An extraordinary session of the UN Security Council will be held on the matter today (6 July).
  • Serbia unhappy with pace of EU integration Later in the day, Van Rompuy met with Serbian President Boris Tadić in Belgrade. According to an official communiqué, the two leaders discussed the situation in "Kosovo and Metohia," as Belgrade officially calls its former province. The press also reported that Tadić will attend an extraordinary session of the UN Security Council in New York today, called at the initiative of Serbia. According to the statement, Tadić voiced his dissatisfaction with the slowdown in the European integration process, and insisted that speeding up Serbia's EU accession was crucial for the future of the Western Balkans. Last month, Serbia took another step towards EU integration when EU foreign ministers agreed to start implementing an accord with Serbia known as the Stabilisation and Association Agreement (SAA). The agreement had been blocked for several years, mainly as a result of the Netherlands' insistence that Belgrade must cooperate fully with the UN war crimes tribunal for the former Yugoslavia. Later today, Van Rompuy will be in Pristina to meet the president of Kosovo, Fatmir Sejdiu. A visit to the headquarters of the EU's rule of law mission in Kosovo, EULEX, is also on the agenda.
Prof. Dr  Wolfgang Schumann

29.06.10 Belgium to take merit-based approach to EU enlargement - 0 views

  • Although Belgium is among the most cautious in the European Union when it comes to enlargement, there is a good chance that its forthcoming EU Presidency will be particularly productive in this policy area. At their presentation of the upcoming Belgian presidency's priorities last Friday, Yves Leterme, Belgium's caretaker prime minister and its foreign minister, Steven Vanackere, sounded much like their colleagues from the Netherlands - and not just because they spoke Dutch. The Belgian approach to enlargement is similar to the stance in the Hague: no promises, no dates, just "strict and fair" rules.
  • The next six months could mark important progress for the Western Balkan countries despite Belgium's cautious line. Croatia could close all but one of the negotiation chapters. Macedonia is close to getting a date for the opening of accession negotiations with the EU. Montenegro can count on a positive "avis" (opinion) from the European Commission for its candidate status. The Serbian application could be forwarded to the EU commission for an opinion on Serbia's readiness to become a candidate as well. Kosovo might receive some kind of a roadmap for its Stabilisation and Association Agreement (SAA) with the EU. Bosnia-Herzegovina and Albania can hope for visa liberalisation before the end of the year. Croatia is well-placed to close all its negotiation chapters, with the exception of the famous No. 23 on Judiciary and Fundamental Rights, which will remain to be concluded during the Hungarian Presidency in the first half of 2011. Still, problems could emerge with othe chapters, for example competition. Macedonia is close to finding a win-win solution to its name dispute with Greece. Talking to WAZ.EUobserver, EU diplomats in Brussels expressed cautious optimism that the name problem could be solved in the next months. This would allow the EU finally to set the date that Skopje has been waiting for since 2005 - for formal negotiations to start on Macedonia's entry into the EU.
Prof. Dr  Wolfgang Schumann

29.04.10: EU top brass to drop out of Sarajevo event - 0 views

  • In a political blow for next month's planned Sarajevo conference, EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton and EU enlargement commissioner Stefan Fuele have indicated they will only attend if the presence of all Western Balkan countries, including Kosovo, is guaranteed. According to diplomatic sources in Brussels, Ms Ashton and Mr Fuele intend to follow the approach taken by EU council president Herman Van Rompuy, who stayed away from a EU-Western Balkans summit in Slovenia last month as Serbia refused to attend alongside Kosovo.
Prof. Dr  Wolfgang Schumann

23.04.10: EU states to put Serbia's membership bid on temporary hold - 0 views

  • Serbia's bid to become official candidate for accession to the European Union is likely to be delayed until autumn due to the Balkan country's intransigent position on Kosovo's status, WAZ.EUobserver has learned from well-informed diplomatic sources in Brussels. Member states have indicated they may again postpone processing Serbia's membership application, which Belgrade hopes to see happening in June. The reason is Serbia's intention to raise the question of Kosovo's status at the United Nations. Belgrade is waiting for the advisory opinion of the International Court of Justice (ICJ) on the former Serbian province's declaration of independence, and has threatened to take it to the UN General Assembly.
1 - 20 of 53 Next › Last »
Showing 20 items per page