European Commission President, Jean-Claude Juncker, asked Pristina authorities engage in reforms as required in the EU Strategy on Western Balkan region confirming that Kosovo has e EU future as other Western Balkan partners.
EC President Juncker asked the Parliament of Kosovo to vote the demarcation Agreement with Montenegro saying that this is “key and inevitable step” towards visa liberalisation. He said that once the demarcation is ratified “Kosovo citizens will be the first to benefit.”
“I am not happy to see Kosovars as the only one in Europe who cannot travel freely,” said Juncker. During a joint press conference with Kosovo President, Hashim Thaci, Juncker said that the European Commission is happy to see Kosovo authorities fulfilling all the criteria on visa liberalisation, but he gave no date when Kosovo citizens can move freely into the EU Schengen area.
He also asked Kosovo authorities to deliver results in fighting organised crime and corruption. Juncker said that “a new basis” is needed in Kosovo-Serbia relations, by reaching a legally-binding agreement. The EC President Juncker, accompanied by High Representative, Federica Mogherini, and Commissioner Johannes Hahn are visiting Kosovo when they met senior state officials of Kosovo.
President Thaci assured the EC president that Kosovo will ratify the demarcation with Montenegro soon. He also pledged that Kosovo will remain committed to the EU future. “Your visit gives full meaning to your support and our efforts towards the EU integration,” said Thaci during a joint press conference with Juncker. He said Kosovo remains committed to the EU path and asked for the EU’s support related to this issue. “We are not asking for a shortcut, but we want to be equally treated with other countries and clarity to our path,” said Thaci. He also thanked the EU High Representative, Federica Mogherini for her role as facilitator in the high level dialogue between Kosovo and Serbia, noting that the dialogue is the only way towards full normalisation of relations between the two countries. Thaci expressed his disappointment with the non-ratification of the Agreement on border demarcation with Montenegro during Wednesday’s session of Parliament, but remained optimistic the ratification of the border deal will happen in coming days. /Express/