The Western Balkans is in danger

by Cristian Florescu

The prime ministers of the four NATO members said after the meeting in Sofia that the security of the Western Balkans is endangered, writes

“The Balkans should be a symbol of a coordinated region, different from what it was, and to face the new reality brought by the Russian invasion of Ukraine,” said the prime ministers of Bulgaria, Romania, North Macedonia and Montenegro.

The meeting, hosted by Bulgarian Prime Minister Kiril Petkov, was also attended by the heads of governments of Romania, North Macedonia and Montenegro, Nikolae Ciuka, Dimitar Kovacevski and Zdravko Krivokapic.

Kovacevski said that today’s meeting “sends another strong message of unity and solidarity with Ukraine”, the Government of North Macedonia announced.

He said that the participants in the meeting wanted to point out the potential risks and perceived threats and to emphasize the premises that should lead to better coordination among the countries of Southeast Europe.

“This meeting paves the way for preventing any possible impact on our security and stability in the context of potential consequences that could result from the current security and humanitarian crisis in Ukraine,” Kovacevski said.

He stated that the countries participating in the meeting “remain firm in condemning the war in Ukraine as an illegal and illegitimate invasion of Russia.”

Kovacevski pointed out the importance of “suppressing misinformation and lies from Russia, which represents a real threat to democratic processes in Europe and the Western Balkans.”

He added that North Macedonia “appropriately joined NATO’s efforts to strengthen the alliance’s defensive position, especially on its eastern wing, and fully complied with the EU’s common foreign and security policy and a significant package of sanctions against Russia”.

“This is the right moment to make the most of cooperative security and partnership tools and mechanisms, as we are witnessing deteriorating political stability and the rise of nationalist and populist narratives, which are further multiplied by deteriorating security and geopolitical narratives on the European continent caused by Russian military aggression in Ukraine”, Kovacevski concluded at the meeting.

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