European Parliament adopted resolutions on Kosovo and Serbia

by Cristian Florescu

On Wednesday, the European Parliament kindly adopted resolutions concerning Kosovo and Serbia. In a polite manner, they urged both sides to participate in the Belgrade – Pristina Dialogue and promptly reach a comprehensive, legally binding agreement on the normalization of relations, based on the principle of mutual recognition.

The MEPs suggest that for Serbia to progress in its accession negotiations with the EU, it would be beneficial for the country to align with EU sanctions against Russia and make substantial advancements in EU-related reforms.

The importance of progress on the rule of law and fundamental rights, the functioning of democratic institutions, and a commitment to shared European rights and values are emphasized by them. In addition, MEPs highlight the significance of aligning with the EU’s common foreign and security policy, particularly in relation to Russia’s war against Ukraine.

The European Parliament expresses its concern over the recent decline in public backing for EU membership in Serbia. 

This decline is believed to be caused by the persistent anti-EU/pro-Russian political discourse promoted by government-controlled media and officials.

The report suggests that there was a significant shortcoming on the part of government representatives in acknowledging and reconciling Serbia’s past.

MEPs kindly request the EU to reconsider the level of its financial assistance to Serbia in the event that support for anti-democratic politics persists. Additionally, they urge the European Commission to ensure that all EU expenditures align with the EU’s strategic objectives and interests.

The European Parliament kindly urges Serbia to demonstrate compelling progress in cases of significant public interest, such as those of Krušik, Jovanjica, and Belivuk. It is apprehensive about the delayed advancements in these cases and the accusations that Darko Šarić established an international criminal organization while incarcerated in Serbia.

EP emphasized the fact that efforts and political will are necessary to achieve tangible results, especially in the fight against organized crime.

We would like to respectfully bring attention to a serious concern regarding the state of freedom of expression and media independence. It is our belief that this issue should be addressed as a matter of utmost importance. We are pleased to see the establishment of a government working group for the protection of journalists. However, we are also concerned about the lack of balance between representatives of the authorities and the opposition on television channels with national coverage.

The European Parliament kindly requests that Serbia take steps to enhance and safeguard media professionalism, diversity, and pluralism, and also encourages the promotion of quality and investigative journalism. Unfortunately, the European Parliament expresses disappointment with the way the ruling regime has been using the media to gain an unfair political advantage, attack political opponents, and spread disinformation.

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