Germany suspends funds over Bosnian Serb secessionist moves

The German government has suspended €120 million worth of infrastructure projects in Bosnia's Serb region over its leaders secessionist policies, international peace envoy Christian Schmidt said on Monday (4 July).

Georgians rally en masse for EU, urge government to quit

Georgians staged a new mass rally on Sunday (3 July) demanding that the government resign over its failure to formally secure candidacy for membership of the European Union.

Macron says compromise has been found over North Macedonia’s EU bid

French President Emmanuel Macron said on Thursday (30 June) he thinks a compromise solution has been found for the EU membership negotiation framework for North Macedonia, without giving any details.

Summit debrief with Viola Von Cramon: ‘A disastrous signal for the Western Balkans’

EURACTIV debriefed with MEP Viola Von Cramon-Taubadel from the 23-24 summit, its highlights being a meeting with the leaders of the Western Balkan countries and a decision to grant candidate status to Ukraine and Moldova.

Bulgarian parliament opens the door to the EU for North Macedonia

Bulgarian parliament handed a mandate on Friday (24 June) to the outgoing cabinet of Kiril Petkov to approve a French proposal allowing Sofia to lift its veto on the start of North Macedonia's EU accession talks.

‘This is a victory’: smiling Zelenskyy promises EU membership while battles rage

President Volodymyr Zelenskyy on Thursday (23 June) declared the EU's move to accept Ukraine as a candidate for accession as a victory and promised not to rest until Russia's defeat and full membership had been secured.

Bulgarian parliament poised to solve North Macedonia conundrum

The foreign affairs committee of the Bulgarian parliament on Thursday (23 June) passed a draft decision approving the French Presidency compromise for Sofia to lift its veto on Skopje to start accession talks, paving the way for the text potentially being approved in plenary on Friday. 
Europe's East 23-06-2022

EU leaders grant candidate status to Ukraine and Moldova

In a bold geopolitical move dubbed a "historic moment" for the bloc, EU leaders approved on Thursday (23 June) granting EU candidate status to Ukraine and Moldova, following a European Commission recommendation.

Western Balkans fume over enlargement deadlock

On the sidelines of the triumphant rhetoric over Ukraine and Moldova's imminent granting of EU candidate status, EU leaders meeting in Brussels on Thursday (23 June) faced furious Western Balkan counterparts, highly frustrated about the lack of their own progress on the EU path.

French mediation attempt infuriates MPs in Skopje

The French presidency's proposal aimed at lifting the Bulgarian veto shook the Macedonian government after three small parties threatened to leave if the cabinet approved a draft sent to the Bulgarian parliament to end the dispute between Skopje and Sofia.

Bulgarian PM hints at chance to lift the veto, after summit

Bulgarian Prime Minister Kiril Petkov said on Thursday (23 June) there was no chance Bulgaria would lift its veto on North Macedonia during this EU summit but hinted a solution could be imminent in the coming days.

Albania confirms presence at EU summit, no word from Serbia, North Macedonia

Albanian Prime Minister Edi Rama confirmed on Wednesday (22 June) that he will attend Thursday's EU summit that will focus on enlargement, after announcing on Tuesday that he may boycott it due to Bulgaria’s veto over North Macedonia that is also holding up Tirana.
Elections 22-06-2022

Petkov bites the bullet as North Macedonia veto rattles Bulgaria

The Bulgarian parliament will make today an attempt to make progress in efforts to lift the country’s veto on North Macedonia starting accession talks. But MPs are also likely to pass a no-confidence vote against the government of Kiril Petkov.
Europe's East 22-06-2022

EU closes ranks on Ukraine, Moldova candidate status as decision looms

EU leaders in Brussels are expected to sign off on last week’s recommendation by the European Commission to grant Ukraine and Moldova EU candidate status, according to the latest EU summit draft conclusions, dated 21 June and seen by EURACTIV....

Some 120,000 march in Georgia ‘for Europe’ after blow to EU bid

At least 120,000 Georgians took to the streets Monday (20 June) in support of the country's EU membership bid, after the European Commission recommended deferring Tbilisi's candidacy.

Slovenia wants ‘magic formula’ on Western Balkans as EU leaders likely to fall short of solution

Slovenia has urged member states to send a strong political signal to the Western Balkans, while EU leaders are likely to fall short of firm commitments. EU leaders are set to meet for a summit between 23 and 24 June...

Georgians to hold ‘march for Europe’ after blow to EU bid

Georgians are gearing up on Monday (20 June) for a mass rally in support of the country's membership in the European Union, days after the European Commission recommended to defer Tbilisi's candidacy.

Ukraine, Moldova should get EU candidate status, Georgia might need to wait, EU executive says

The EU should grant candidate status to Ukraine and Moldova, bringing them a step closer to bloc membership, while Georgia still has some homework to do, the European Commission said on Friday (17 June) in a highly-anticipated opinion on the bloc's future enlargement.

Western Balkan hopefuls hope to ride on Ukraine’s train to membership

Three of the four Western Balkan EU candidates have signed a joint statement with Ukraine in support of its EU candidacy, in a signal that fast-tracking the war-torn eastern country would not mess up their own slow-moving EU integration but...
Europe's East 12-06-2022

Zhovkva: We don’t deserve a ‘Bosnia scenario’ on EU candidate status

Failure to grant Ukraine EU candidate status later this month would signal to Russia Europe's weakness and could plunge the country into the perpetual EU waiting room like Bosnia and Herzegovina, Ukrainian President Zelenskyy's foreign policy adviser, Ihor Zhovkva, told EURACTIV.

In Kyiv, EU chief promises ‘a signal’ on Ukraine’s bid next week

The European Commission will provide a clear signal next week on Ukraine's EU candidate status bid, its chief Ursula von der Leyen has said, as fighting rages in the east and south of the country.

France hints at halfway decision for Ukraine candidate status

A decision to give Ukraine candidate status to the European Union has to be done without weakening the bloc and to ensure Kyiv is not left in limbo for years, a French presidential official said on Friday (10 June).

Germany urges Serbia to apply sanctions against Moscow

Germany's Chancellor Olaf Scholz on Friday (10 June) urged EU candidate Serbia to join the European Union in imposing sanctions against Russia over the war of Ukraine.
Europe's East 10-06-2022

Ukraine makes diplomatic push to win over EU accession process doubters

Ukraine has launched a charm offensive in recent weeks to convince the still sceptical Western European capitals to grant the country EU candidate status and avoid the pitfall of being lumped together with two other eastern hopefuls, Moldova and Georgia.