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‘Discrimination’ of Western Balkans ‘unacceptable’, foreign minister says

Hungary belongs to the pro-enlargement camp in the European Union and considers the "discrimination" against the Western Balkans "unacceptable", the foreign minister said ahead of a meeting of the General Affairs Council in Brussels on Tuesday.
12. December 2023 17:59

Peter Szijjarto said on Facebook that in recent years an “anti-enlargement atmosphere has prevailed”, and none of the Western Balkans countries had been given a proper chance to advance in the accession process.

“Hungary believes that the EU needs the impetus and freshness that the countries of the Western Balkans would bring,” he said.

The accession process should progress based on the individual countries’ performance and not on “artificial, tactical considerations”, he added.

Szijjarto said that starting accession talks with Ukraine would be “irresponsible” as the European Commission had not prepared the groundwork. Neither the EU nor Ukraine were well-prepared “for mutually beneficial and well-structured accession talks”, he added.

“At the same time, the countries of the Western Balkans have been waiting for years; they are well-prepared, so it’s utterly incomprehensible why certain member countries are blocking their progress,” he said.

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