Although historic on many accounts, the last European Council, especially in taking bold decisions and granting candidate status for Ukraine and Moldova, somehow failed to acknowledge the strategic importance of the Western Balkans in the new geopolitical reality in Europe. Even though the European perspective was once more underlined as a guiding principle and policy, nothing was done to back up the words with concrete actions and decisions. The region once more felt disappointed and left out. There is a growing feeling among citizens and political elites in the Western Balkans countries that enlargement is a dream slowly turning into a nightmare. If we add unsolved political and security issues, the growing influence of third actors, the lack of necessary reforms, the economic crisis around the corner and the persistent migration crisis, we can see why many are worried about the likelihood of a peaceful and sustainable future for the region.
Over the years, Kosovo has seen its share of disappointments regarding the EU integration process. The potential and perspective remain, but this is not enough.
- What should be done to unlock it and move the country closer to the EU?
- Where do we go from here? Is there still a possibility to turn things around?
- What must be done from the side of the EU and what from the side of the region?
- Should we think about new approaches and ideas, such as a political community, to jumpstart something that is now clearly in crisis?
- H.E. Dr Vjosa Osmani-Sadriu, President of the Republic of Kosovo
- Mr Vojko Volk, State Secretary for International Affairs, Office of the Prime Minister of the Republic of Slovenia
Moderated by Mr Peter Grk, Secretary General, Bled Strategic Forum
Programme of the event:
9.45 Gathering and coffee break
10.00 Official arrival of H.E. Dr Osmani-Sadriu
10.00-11.00 Panel discussion