Western Balkan countries retain visa-free regime

The EU Council of Ministers did not discuss any temporary suspension of visa-free regime for the Western Balkans countries.

The ministers have concluded that the Western Balkan countries “have made certain progress” even though “many asylum seekers still come to the EU member states from Serbia and FYR Macedonia.”

EU Home Affairs Commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom pointed out that “some EU member states have expressed their concern over it.” She said that false asylum seekers were mostly Roma and Albanians.

Malmtrom added that EU interior and justice ministers had thoroughly discussed European Commission (EC) semi-annual report and that the ministers also reviewed a prepared mechanism for emergency suspension of visa-free regime for six to nine months in emergency situations.

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