Croatia FM says Serbia must meet EU membership criteria

Croatia supports the European prospects of all Southeast European countries, including Serbia, but they must meet membership criteria and separate the negotiating process from election campaigning, Croatian Foreign and European Affairs Minister Miro Kovac said in Zagreb on Monday.

Asked if Croatia was blocking Serbia's EU entry talks, Kovac said all countries that wanted to enter the bloc must meet membership criteria and separate the negotiating process from election campaigns.

"Croatia in general supports the European prospects of all countries in Southeast Europe," Kovac said after talks with visiting Estonian Foreign Minister Marina Kaljurand.

"As far as the negotiating process itself is concerned, we in Croatia know from experience that the negotiating process needs to be separated from election campaigning," Kovac said alluding to an early election in Serbia.

He recalled that Croatia's negotiating process was difficult and painful, given the number of difficult and unpleasant reforms that needed to be carried out.

"This goes for other EU aspirants too, including Serbia," he underscored.

Commenting on announcements that Slovenia could soon remove the fence from the border, Kovac said that during the talks with Slovenia he was under the impression that agreement regarding that was possible, expressing hope that this issue would be resolved in the near future.

Kovac is scheduled to visit Slovenia on Tuesday and talks to top Slovenian officials about this and other topics.

Last update: Fri, 24/06/2016 - 08:49

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