Varhelyi calls for more patience: Integration is about security

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The EU Commissioner for Neighborhood and Enlargement Oliver Varhelyi called on Thursday for a little bit more patience from Albania when it comes to opening negotiations with the European Union.

In a joint press conference with Prime Minister Edi Rama, Varhelyi said he’s confident the process will conclude before the end of the French EU Presidency.

He praised Albania for its perseverance in the process and stressed that integration is about security and stability in the Western Balkans.

“We must put to use everything we can to stabilize the Western Balkans. The entire integration process is about security and stability in the Western Balkans. That’s why I cannot give time to those who are involved in doing what they shouldn’t be”, the EU Commissioner said.

“We really appreciate Albania’s patience and we ask for a little bit more patience from your side. The aim is to achieve this [opening negotiations] during the French Presidency”, he added.

The fact that there is still no decision about Albania, doesn’t mean that the EU is playing around with the Western Balkan nation.

“It is a serious situation. It is not Albania who is being played around, so the EU is playing around with itself. However, this is a strong declaration from a Commissioner. We need to promote the achievements of every candidate country when the criteria are fulfilled”, Varhelyi said.

The EU commissioner said the scope behind the tour comes amid fears that security has been compromised.

“EU’s security is being compromised, that is why we need to do this now, as our credibility is being questioned”, he concluded.

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