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Pszczolkowska, Dominika

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Gazeta Wyborcza - Poland | 27/01/2009

Serbia on the path to the EU?

The daily Gazeta Wyborcza comments on the visit to Brussels of the Serb foreign minister, who was seeking to pave the way for the first talks on EU membership for Serbia. "Belgrade wants to apply to the EU for membership. In reaction to this embrace of the Union Moscow put the Serbs under pressure by turning off their gas supplies at the beginning of the year. Yesterday the [Serb] Foreign Minister Vuk Jeremić travelled to Brussels to sound out the terrain before signing a formal declaration of intent on EU membership. He said the Serbs may submit this declaration in the first half [of 2009] if the leaders of the Union signal their approval. They want to begin membership negotiations in 2010. This is a turning point. Only a year ago the pro-Europeans and those who favoured close ties with Moscow were fighting each other. Russia was on their side in the conflict over Kosovo [former Serb province] while the majority of EU countries recognised the independence of the province."

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