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EU ministers fail to decide to open accession talks with Albania, N. Macedonia

EU ministers fail to decide to open accession talks with Albania, N. Macedonia Visit of Johannes Hahn to Serbia; Source: European Commission

TIRANA (Albania), October 16 (SeeNews) – The foreign ministers of the European Union member states have failed to come up with a decision to open accession negotiations with Albania and North Macedonia, enlargement commissioner Johannes Hahn said.

It is important to stress that the huge majority of member states supported the European Commission’s recommendation to open accession talks with both Western Balkan countries, Hahn said in a video file posted on the European Council's website after a meeting of the General Affairs Council on Tuesday.

“Confident that EU leaders will take this decision at the European Council as any further delay will damage our role in the Western Balkans and the credibility of our ambition to become a stronger global player,” Hahn noted.

The next European Council meeting is scheduled for October 17-18.

“We have to restore our credibility in the Western Balkans and live up to our commitments,” Hahn stressed, adding that North Macedonia and Albania have done their homework and implemented painful reforms.

“EU accession is a merit-based process and that’s why we need to acknowledge concrete progress.”

The European Council granted the status of candidate country for EU membership to Albania and North Macedonia in 2014 and 2005, respectively.

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