President Thaçi: EU’s liberalization delays, a historic injustice

Prishtina, November 11th, 2016 – President of the Republic of Kosovo, Mr. Hashim Thaçi, has received today at a meeting the EU Commissioner for Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations, Mr. Johannes Hahn.

At this meeting, President Thaçi once again reiterated that delays caused to Kosovo’s visa liberalisation process are unacceptable.

“These delays caused by EU, are a historic injustice towards the people of Kosovo” said Mr. President.

Further on, President Thaçi added that Kosovo has unjustly been added further criteria by the European Union, only to justify the unnecessary and damaging delays by Brussels to our perspective.

Mr. President also stated that Kosovo does not deserve such conditioning of the visa liberalisation process, as EU has sufficient mechanisms to conduct such conditioning during the membership process.

“I fear that someone at the EU has erroneously confused the visa liberalisation process with Kosovo’s membership process. You are forgetting that Kosovo does not become a EU member state at the very moment when the visa requirement is removed” said the President of the Republic at the meeting with Commissioner Hahn.

Mr. President also said that he has often enough heard the line that EU learns for the mistakes of the past.

“If this is the case, which borders where in that case demarcated by Georgia or Ukraine, countries which are ready to be given the right of visa free travel within EU in the coming weeks”, asked President Thaçi.

At the meeting with Commissioner Hahn, President Thaçi emphasized the fact that delays in visa liberalisation process and clarification of Kosovo’s, as well as Balkan’s European path, are allowing for provision of space to some other powers to destabilize the region.

“Such delays in the clarification of the European perspective and visa liberalisation are augmenting the rise of the political and religious extremism and I am afraid that this vacuum will be utilised by powers which do not hold the wellbeing of the region in their hearts”, added Mr. Thaçi.

President Thaçi thanked Commissioner Hahn for his visit to Kosovo, in the immediate aftermath of the publication of the Progress Report.

“I welcome your personal engagement and we highly praise your determination in finding solutions in preservation and advancement of the European reforms process” said President Thaçi.