Hahn gives incentives to Protesters: EU Reccomendation is in jeopardy
Tuesday, 02 May 2017

Commissioner for European Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations Johannes Hahn says violence in the Macedonian Parliament will not affect the country's chances for the start of EU accession talks only if they are not repeated.

"I did not expect this but unfortunately things can sometimes turn for the worse. However, if there is an impression that the country will be automatically ejected from the accession process, the answer is 'no'. The ones committed to the European process were attacked in the Parliament and it would be unjust to say that the European perspective has ended. On the contrary, I hope these events are a wake-up call. If they repeat, then the European perspective will be in jeopardy", says Hahn in an interview with Austrian daily "Der Standard".

He adds that EU accession talks will not begin if the democratic process is continually blocked.

"There has been a clear recommendation for years from the Commission that the accession talks should be launched. But this has not materialized due to the veto from EU members Greece and Bulgaria. Macedonia was a model-country in the region a decade ago but slipped up in the meantime. We have been investing efforts to bring the country back on the European path over the past 2,5 years. This was achieved by the elections but not the formation of a government, which has been blocked because the parliamentary majority is not recognized by the party that has ruled thus far. Democracy means change. If the democratic process is continually blocked we will not be able to maintain our recommendation for the start of accession talks", underlines Hahn. 


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