Europe

Macron: EU has to reform itself for Serbia

France is engaged in finding a "global and permanent agreement" to Serbia-Kosovo, says French President Emanuel Macron

Talha Öztürk   | 16.07.2019
Macron: EU has to reform itself for Serbia


BELGRADE, Serbia 

In parallel with the reforms that Serbia must to implement on the road to joining the EU, the bloc likewise has to reform itself in order to be ready for Serbia, France's president said Monday.

Emmanuel Macron's remarks came at a joint press conference with Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic during an official visit to Serbia's capital of Belgrade.

Macron said he believes the EU was not currently functioning well, and that it had to make quick decisions and reforms in order to function better.

Speaking on the issue of Kosovo, Macron announced he would organize a special meeting with the leadership of Kosovo and Serbia, which would include German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

Macron stressed that France was engaged in finding a "global and permanent agreement" for the dispute between Belgrade and Pristina.

"If Europe wants to be strong, it can be, if Europe helps Serbia and Kosovo find a compromise. I think it is our responsibility to give you support along the way to reach an agreement," Macron said.

He also said France and Germany would support the renewal of the dialogue between Serbia and Kosovo to find a solution in the next period.

"France, together with Germany, will be ready to support the renewal of the dialogue aimed at finding a solution in the next few months. There is no strange or magical solution, not in the pocket of either French, German, nor American, the answer is in your hearts and the intelligence of decision-makers," said Macron.

He added that an agreement between Serbia and Kosovo would also be a test for Europe.

"I really believe that the future of Serbia is to be ready to build such an agreement, and it is a test for Europe itself today, whether it is capable of concluding such an agreement," said Macron.

After the conference, Macron and Vucic attended a ceremony for the signing of 22 new bilateral agreements.

Macron originally planned to visit Serbia in early December in 2018, but the visit was delayed due to the protest of "yellow vests".

This is the first visit be a French president to Serbia since 2001.



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