Radev in Brussels: European integration requires sustainable and irreversible results

He spoke with Ursula von der Leyen and António Costa on the possibilities for achieving progress in agreeing the negotiating framework for North Macedonia

Photo: EU Rumen Radev, Ursula von der Leyen and António Costa.

The European integration requires sustainable and irreversible results in building good neighbourly relations in the Balkans, said Bulgaria’s President Rumen Radev on Monday during his meeting in Brussels with EC President Ursula von der Leyen and Portugal’s PM António Costa, Head of the rotating Presidency of the Council. 

The meeting was initiated by von der Leyen and Costa ahead of the special sitting of the European Council.

The main focus of the discussions was on the possibilities for achieving progress in agreeing on the negotiating framework and the start of EU accession talks with the Republic of North Macedonia.

 “The EU enlargement process has been a Bulgarian foreign policy priority for over 10 years and it is our country that is most interested in the rapid progress of our closest state in the Balkans,” the Bulgaria’s President underscored.

But he specified that the progress in the EU integration process should be based on respect for human rights and full implementation of the Copenhagen criteria for EU membership.

The Bulgarian President highlighted the need of positive examples in the bilateral relations between Bulgaria and the Republic of North Macedonia, as well as of a direct and open bilateral dialogue for resolving the problems.

He described as a good sign in this respect the  upcoming joint commemoration of the work of the Holy Brothers Cyril and Methodius by the delegations of Bulgaria and North Macedonia in Rome. He also called for political will on the part of Skopje to achieve concrete results on the raising issues.

President Radev also stated that the Bulgarian caretaker government is ready to pursue an active dialogue with the Republic of North Macedonia in this direction, as well as to discuss the possibilities for accelerating the European integration process.

According to him, any possible decision to start EU membership negotiations by the Republic of North Macedonia will be carefully analysed and compared with the Bulgarian Parliament's Declaration and Bulgaria's Framework Position on the EU Enlargement and Stabilisation and Association Process of October 2019.

 

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