Enlargement

Montenegro dismisses NATO drift allegations as ‘disinformation’ ahead of alliance summit

Allegations of a cooling relationship between Montenegro and NATO is disinformation and fake news, defence minister Olivera Injac told EURACTIV in an exclusive interview.
Digital & Media 11-06-2021

Campaign group flags judicial interference in journalist cases in Serbia and Montenegro

Reporters Without Borders (RSF) flagged on Friday (11 June) two instances where key judiciary figures interfered with legal proceedings in cases involving two investigative journalists in Serbia and Montenegro.
Global Europe 09-06-2021

EU not considering joining US in sanctioning Western Balkans

US-type sanctions for the Western Balkans are not on the agenda, the European Commission said after President Joe Biden signed order blocking property banning entry to the country of those "contributing to the destabilising situation in the" region on Tuesday.
Digital & Media 09-06-2021

Serb tabloids call Mladic ‘hero forever’ as he loses final appeal in genocide conviction

Ratko Mladić, the wartime Bosnian Serb commander dubbed the “butcher of Bosnia”, lost the final appeal in the genocide conviction against him before the International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals (MICT) in The Hague on Tuesday (8 June), prompting a wide range of reactions in Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Croatia.
08-06-2021

How is corruption investigated in Serbia: The Krušik case

In Serbia, corruption is investigated only in rare cases when it suits the country’s president, Aleksandar Vučić, as the Krušik arms export scandal shows, writes Svetla Miteva.
Digital & Media 04-06-2021

Balkan media conference: ‘The EU barks rather timidly to enemies of press freedom ‘

Media freedom throughout Europe needs all the support it can get, but the situation in the Balkans is particularly worrying, participants told an online conference "Media Freedom in the Balkans” organised by EURACTIV.
China 03-06-2021

MEPs sound the alarm over Chinese mass surveillance project in Belgrade

The European Parliament is taking a close look at China's high-tech present to Serbia, a mass surveillance system that involves the installation of thousands of smart surveillance cameras equipped with facial recognition features, MEP Gwendoline Delbos-Corfield (Greens/EFA, France) told EURACTIV in an interview.
02-06-2021

Leaked paper sheds light on poor rule of law, media situation in Serbia

The print media in Serbia that most often violate the journalistic code of professional conduct continue to be the beneficiaries of public funding, warned an internal EU paper obtained by EURACTIV that painted a bleak picture of the EU candidate country's democratic record.
China 02-06-2021

Montenegro learns true cost of China-backed $1 billion road to nowhere

Two sleek new roads vanish into mountain tunnels high above a sleepy Montenegrin village, the unlikely endpoint of a billion-dollar project bankrolled by China that is threatening to derail the tiny country's economy.
Digital & Media 21-05-2021

Printing houses in Serbia refuse to publish new daily newspaper

United Group, a leading multi-play telecoms and media provider in South-East Europe, announced in April it was launching a daily newspaper in Serbia with a responsible editorial concept, to counter the bad situation with print media in the country. However, no printing house in Serbia has so far accepted to print the new daily, called Nova.
18-05-2021

The EU should resist moves to halt Balkan enlargement

EU enlargement to the Western Balkans has been marked by continued roadblocks and unjustified delays. The region's window of opportunity might close soon, another delay could deal a death blow to the enlargement process altogether and that is why the EU should not ignore Albania’s progress, writes Akri Çipa.
17-05-2021

Serbia rewards president’s controversial media aide with top culture post

Serbia’s appointment last week of Suzana Vasiljević, media aide to President Aleksandar Vučić, to the management of the Belgrade Philharmonic Orchestra, despite her lacking any connection to classical music, has raised many eyebrows in the country.
12-05-2021

The Brief, powered by FACEBOOK – Western Balkans photo-op

Janez Janša surprised everyone by deciding to unveil the priorities of Slovenia’s presidency of the Council of the EU during a trip to Greece this week. One of the highlights of its six-month stint at the helm will be an “informal EU-Western Balkans summit".
12-05-2021

Facing pressure, Bulgaria tries to explain its North Macedonia veto

Facing pressure from EU members, the Bulgarian ambassador to the EU explained on Tuesday (11 May) to the EU ministers his country’s decision to veto the start of neighbouring North Macedonia's accession negotiations.
11-05-2021

Albania has voted – will it be a new momentum for its EU path?

Pressed by major challenges such as endemic corruption, brain drain and economic hurdles, Albania needs a strong and stable political establishment that will push for an ambitious reform agenda. The latest elections provide hope, but much work lies ahead, write Tobias Rüttershoff and Teona Lavrelashvili.
10-05-2021

Opening Pandora’s Box: The EU’s dangerous Bosnia game

EU leaders should reject any new talk of ethnic division and secession in the western Balkans and finally make good on their promises to the region's nations, write Tineke Strik and Viola von Cramon-Taubadel.
10-05-2021

EU faced with ‘deep disappointment’ in Western Balkans

EU foreign minister will discuss the Western Balkans on Monday (10 May) to determine how to improve cooperation with the region, burdened by lingering nationalism, a weak economy and widespread disappointment with its fading EU membership prospects.
05-05-2021

US and EU back Western Balkans borders at UN

The United States and the EU expressed support for the territorial borders of Bosnia and Herzegovina, which have recently been called into question, and for the UN envoy to the country, who has been criticized by Russia.
04-05-2021

Bosnia and Herzegovina must end discrimination to ensure its EU future

Bosnia and Herzegovina is at the crossroads between the success and failure of its European dream. War and secession are certainly not the way forward, but neither is maintaining the status quo, without implementing reforms agreed with the European Union, writes Dragan Čović.
28-04-2021

Albania PM declares victory but opponents cry foul

Albania's prime minister declared victory in parliamentary elections on Tuesday (27 April) and claimed a record third term in office, but the opposition has refused to accept the result.
27-04-2021

Serbia’s Vucic ‘treating the EU as if stupid were its middle name’

Serbian President Alexandar Vučić deflected EU criticism on the worsening situation of rule of law and media freedom in his country, with the help of media under his control. EURACTIV looked at the real picture.
27-04-2021

Washington voices support for Western Balkans’ EU path after non-paper scare

The United States voiced full support and pledged to help the Western Balkan countries' efforts to join the European Union on Monday (27 April), after an unofficial diplomatic note suggesting border changes in the region raised fears of renewed ethnic tensions in the south-eastern corner of Europe.
26-04-2021

Albania parties at loggerheads after hard-fought election

Albania's opposition claimed victory after a parliamentary election on Sunday (25 April) seen as crucial to the country's dreams of EU membership, but the ruling party said it was too soon to call a result.
22-04-2021

EU action awaited as phantom paper further unhinges Western Balkans

A firmer stance from Brussels – noticeably missing last week – against a controversial document proposing border changes in the Western Balkans would help calm the growing anxieties in the region, analysts said. At the same time, regional and international...