Djelic: economic crisis won’t stall Serbia’s EU bid

BELGRADE, Serbia

The economic crisis will not affect Serbia’s EU accession process, Deputy Prime Minister for European Integration Bozidar Djelic said on Saturday (May 9th).

While acknowledging that the financial crisis has an impact, he noted that several EU officials — including Enlargement Commissioner Olli Rehn — have made clear that the future of the Western Balkans, especially Serbia, is in the EU.

The Union has just approved a 100m-euro loan to support Serbia’s budget, assistance no other EU aspirant has achieved yet, Djelic stressed.

Hague tribunal chief prosecutor Serge Brammertz kicks off a two-day visit to Belgrade on Monday. Ahead of that, Djelic reiterated that Serbia is doing everything it can to wrap up war crimes co-operation with the tribunal. He also said he is optimistic that Brammertz will issue a positive assessment that will enable the unblocking of the Stabilisation and Association Agreement Serbia signed with the EU 13 months ago. The Netherlands has insisted Serbia must first arrest the two remaining war crime fugitives, Ratko Mladic and Goran Hadzic.

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