Important for Balkans to Join European Project
Albanian Daily News
Published November 4, 2017
Prime Minister, Edi Rama took part in the 10th edition of the "World Policy Conference", which kicked off Friday in Marrakech of Morocco. PM Rama was invited to be part of the panel "The Future of South-Eastern Europe", together with Serbian PM Ana Brnabic, where he talked about the importance of regional cooperation and the role of Albania in it, as well as the challenges of Albania's EU integration.
Bringing as an example the relations between Albania and Serbia, which are now normalized, PM Rama underlined that the best future for the peoples of the two countries, what the governments must choose, is neighborly relations and reciprocal cooperation for the common good of citizens. "What I see as a very positive reflection of this is how much things are changing in regards to population. This is a new way to live in the Balkans, a way which is radically disconnected from the culture of how we lived in the past," PM Rama said.
In the framework of the regional cooperation and good neighborly relations, the PM underlined among others that by recognizing Kosovo, Serbia will make a big step forward and disburden itself of the past.
"Kosovo is now a Republic. It is there and it is functioning as an independent, sovereign state, with its institutions, and I am very happy to say that it has an admirable model of respect for minorities, above all for the Serbian minority, which is also represented in the Parliament and Government. My conviction was, is, and will be that by recognizing Kosovo, Serbia will make a big step forward and will get rid of a burden of the past, which is an obstacle to see towards an easier future," Rama said.
Talking about the prospective of EU enlargement with other aspiring countries, the PM said that the countries are in a different historical moment, that of completing the started process. The PM underlined that it is very important that the Balkan countries become part of the European project, as an extra factor for a safer and more secure Europe.
"It's very important to finish this project, exactly for the same reason that is underlined even by the anti-Europeans, exactly for the security reason," Rama said.
The PM said that the current Balkans has positioned itself clearly in favor of the EU and is working hard for this.
"What we are now doing in the region does not happen because we are different from what our predecessors who made the wars were. This is happening because there is a strong pro-European sentiment in this region. This region is the right place to understand how attractive Europe is for people who know what war is, people who have seen war and know how bad things can get because of it. Therefore, one more time I emphasize the fact that the integration process will help in softening these discontents and disagreements," Rama said.

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