The US State Department responded to today’s decision of the Council of Europe to not open Albania and North Macedonia’s accession negotiations with the EU.
In a recent statement US Department of State says it supports Albania and North Macedonia on the path to Euro-Atlantic integration, while expressing disappointment with today’s Council decision. State Department’s spokeswoman Morgan Ortagus posted on Twitter the official response from the Department, saying it expects the Council to make a positive decision in the summer of 2020.
“We are disappointed the EU Council did not agree to open accession negotiations with North Macedonia & Albania at this time. The U.S. supports their EU aspirations & continued reforms for the good of their citizens. The United States supports North Macedonia and Albania’s commitment to Transatlantic integration and aspirations to join the European Union. We are disappointed the European Council did not recognize each country’s very strong reform efforts by agreeing to open accession negotiations at this time. A positive decision would have reaffirmed the credibility of their EU path and firmly pushed back against malign external actors who seek to undermine Western values and Euro-Atlantic community. We recognize that the EU Council did not say “No” to either Albania or North Macedonia, nor did the EU establish new conditions for the accession negotiations. We hope that the European Council will reach a consensus on a positive decision for both countries well in advance of the EU-Western Balkans Summit next May.
The United States will remain a strategic partner of Albania and North Macedonia as they continue their work to strengthen the rule of law, further anti-corruption efforts, develop their economies and fight against organized crime. We encourage both these two countries to remain steadfast in building a transparent, rule based democratic society responsive to the citizens’ needs. The USA will continue working with the European partners to advance shared goals of stability and security in the Western Balkans” concludes the official response of the American State Department.