EU Council President Donald Tusk stressed on Monday that Serbia can count on full EU membership “after the end of the dialogue with Pristina.”
At a joint press conference after his meeting with Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic in Brussels on Friday, Tusk said that the EU “counts on Serbia, as Serbia can count on the EU.”
“At the end of the dialogue stands Serbia’s full membership in the EU. That is what we promised in Thessaloniki and what we are ready to fulfill,” the he said.
“Serbia has made its geo-strategic choice by deciding in favor on the European path and there is no return there. I hope that this choice will be followed by actions,” Tusk said, according to Tanjug.
Vucic said in Brussels today that he received Tusk’s “firm word of honor” that Serbia will become a member of the EU “when it fulfills obligations” – but that it was “not possible to get a concrete date.”
Vucic said that Serbia is expected to complete the dialogue with Pristina, as well as “reforms in the field of foreign policy and the rule of law,” and stressed that Serbia “can complete reforms, but that the conclusion of the dialogue depends on the other side.”
“Now is the time to talk to (German) Chancellor Merkel and French President Emanuel Macron,” the president remarked on Friday.
Earlier the same day, Kosovo Foreign Minister Enver Hoxhaj said that Pristina was interested in “beginning the last phase of dialogue” with Belgrade that would lead to “mutual recognition.”
Ethnic Albanians in Kosovo unilaterally declared independence in 2008, but Serbia rejects this act as a violation of the country’s Constitution, sovereignty, and territorial integrity.
The two sides have been involved in EU-sponsored negotiations, “the Belgrade-Pristina dialogue,” since 2011.