Kosovo & Serbia Progress Reports: quote from Viola von Cramon MEP
Today, the European Parliament will debate and vote on its position regarding the European Commission’s Progress Reports for Kosovo and Serbia. Viola von Cramon, Greens/EFA MEP and European Parliament rapporteur on Kosovo and shadow rapporteur on Serbia, comments:
"The announcement of the European Reform Agenda of dialogue between the government of Kosovo and the Commission is welcome, but it cannot remain just words on paper. We need to pay close attention to the implementation, and to that end, we support Kosovo in its reforms to the rule of law, the judiciary and public administration, and we want to work together to tackle corruption and organized crime.
"A stable government with a clear pro-European reform agenda should actively engage in negotiations with Serbia. The normalisation of relations between Kosovo and Serbia and a binding legal agreement are central; this would also fulfil the prerequisite for accession negotiations and possible EU accession for both states. The Kosovo government should take the necessary steps to seize the opportunity for EU accession.
"However, it's also time for all EU Member States to do their part and show their commitment to a European future for all Western Balkan countries. Greece, Romania, Slovakia, Spain and Cyprus should finally recognize Kosovo. The Council should clear the way for visa-free travel, as the criteria have long been met, which would be a meaningful signal for the EU's credibility in the entire region."
Watch plenary debate with speech by rapporteur Viola von Cramon live, from around 10:35.
There will be a press conference from the European Parliament with Viola von Cramon, at 17:00.
The results of the votes are expected to be announced from 19:00