Deputy Prime Minister Bozidar Djelic said today that the messages which President of the European Commission Jose Manuel Barroso brought to Belgrade are encouraging, but that the “Hague condition“ will be the greatest challenge for Serbia in the process of European integrations in the months to come.
Djelic said in a statement to the Tanjug news agency that full cooperation with the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY) in The Hague is a condition for obtaining the EU candidate status and added that it is necessary that competent authorities act in accordance with suggestions so that progress in cooperation with this tribunal could be noted and the next report of Chief Prosecutor Serge Brammertz be positive.
He said that in the upcoming period Serbia should also focus on things that are completely under its control, ie the reform agenda, and meet the deadlines in this field.
The next evaluation of results will be on 10 June, when the plenary session of the Enhanced dialogue with the EU will be held in Belgrade. For this occasion, we will prepare a report on the Action plan for acquiring the EU candidate status , Djelic said.
Speaking about the problem of false asylum seekers, the Deputy Prime Minister said that the measures taken to address this problem resulted in reducing the number of requests for asylum.
Serbia proposed some measures, such as shortening the deadlines for decisions granting asylum status as well as providing efficient exchange of information on false asylum seekers.
We will present the legal changes to our European partners, so that everything is in line with European standards and respect for human and minority rights, said the Deputy Prime Minister.
He said that during yesterday’s talks of Serbian officials with Barroso, greater financial support for the EU Western Balkans in the next budget period, which begins in 2013, was discussed.