Op 18 Oktober besloot de Europese Raad na een langdurig debat dat het de toetredingsonderhandelingen met Albanië en Noord-Macedonië zou uitstellen. De oppositie tegen het openen van de onderhandelingen werd geleid door Frankrijk, die van mening is dat het EU toelatingsproces eerst moest worden aangepast voordat onderhandelingen met aspirant lidstaten geopend kunnen worden. Het debat ging verder over de vooruitgang die beide landen hadden gemaakt op terrein van rechtstaat, mensenrechten en democratisering.
Recent research shows that between 25.000 – 40.000 people are annually leaving each of the Western Balkans countries. Not only young people, but increasingly the middle class as well. A group of young scientist from the region has engaged in a project ‘New Horizons for the Young Generations in the Balkans” in order to discuss their visions how to overcome old- fashioned politics and nationalisms and the lack of perspective for younger generations. They will sketch alternative horizons and the look for alternatives for South-Eastern Europe’s way beyond emigration. Den Haag will be the first place in Europe after Vienna where the results of the mentioned initiative will be presented to the public.
Zullen we ooit deel uitmaken van het Europese project? Dat is de vraag die alle Westelijke Balkan leiders stellen wanneer ze zich voorbereiden op de grote top. Na de uitspraak van de Franse president Macron, geen uitbreiding totdat de EU zelf haar zaken op orde heeft, vorige maand in Straatsburg, vielen hun dromen aan diggelen.
On the 6th of February the European Commission presented its long awaited enlargement strategy for the Western Balkans. Since the State of the Union of European Commission President J.C. Juncker last year, there was a growing momentum for a clearer prospect for accession of Bosnia-Herzegovina, Serbia, Montenegro, Kosovo, Macedonia and Albania to the Union.
On 25 June parliamentary elections took place in Albania, described by Prime Minister and leader of the Socialist Party (PS) Edi Rama as a pivotal moment for the country and its hopes to join the EU. The opposition originally boycotted the elections but decided to take part after agreeing with the ruling parties on a package of measures on 18 May. The measures allowed the opposition to appoint several “technical” ministers and heads of state agencies, meeting their demands for free and fair elections.
Between the 30th of July and the 3rd of August the Friedrich Ebert Stiftung (FES) Belgrade office, European Forum for Democracy and Solidarity and Foundation Max van der Stoel (FMS) organised the second seminar of the 2016 Course for Promising Politicians. The seminar ‘enhancing regional partnership and cooperation’ took place in Skopje, Macedonia. FMS trainer Maja Nenadović and Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Nenad Šebek conducted the training.
Between the 26th and 29th of May Friedrich Ebert Stiftung (FES) Belgrade office, European Forum for Democracy and Solidarity and Foundation Max van der Stoel (FMS) organised the first seminar of the 2016 Course for Promising Politicians. The seminar ‘ich bin ein Social Democrat’ took place in Igalo, Montenegro, and focused on ideology and policies. FMS trainer Michiel Emmelkamp and Novo društvo (Croatia) trainer and SDP international secretary Karolina Leaković conducted the training.
Last weekend (18-21 June) the second seminar of the Course for Promising Politicians (CPP) was held in Tirana, Albania. The seminar on regional cooperation focused on the interrelationships in the Western Balkan states, and on how cooperation between the countries can enhance regional stability and encourage regional growth. Over the course of three days, 27 young politicians followed several workshops on this topic.
Last weekend (22-24 May) a new edition of the Course for Promising Politicians (CPP) started. The first seminar of this year’s course took place in Budva, Montenegro. The seminar on ideology, ‘Ich bin ein Social Democrat’, focused on the policies and the central messages of social democracy. Over the course of three days, 27 young politicians followed several workshops on this topic.