EU's Wigemark; Membership is possible only after demands are met

EU's Wigemark; Membership is possible only after demands are met

EU's Wigemark; Membership is possible only after demands are met Izvor: N1

European Commission's opinion on Bosnia's membership application will probably confirm that the country can become a member state but only after a number of demands are met, said European Union's representative in Bosnia Lars-Gunnar Wigemark.

Bosnia formally applied for EU membership in February 2016 and was to provide answers to the 3,242 questions of the EC's Questionnaire within six months as a part of a regular procedure of obtaining the Commission's opinion on its possible candidate status.

It took the country a year to provide the initial answers because of internal disagreements that stem from deep political and ethnic divisions.

But once the answers were submitted, Brussels sent another 655 follow-up questions that should clarify certain ambiguities. Those answers were submitted in March this year.

The exact date is not known yet, said Wigemark, but the Commission is expected to deliver its opinion soon.

However, he pointed out, it is hard to expect recommendations in terms of further steps towards the membership before the governments are formed at all levels in Bosnia.

“I suppose this will be clearly said in the opinion,” said Wigemark and urged political actors to stop with conditioning and form the governments as soon as possible.

“Government must be established, the rule over the country has to be there because if bodies are not formed and if there's a vacuum, it opens an opportunity for some other powers to fill in that space and that may eventually lead to unwanted developments,” said Head of the EU Delegation and EU Special Representative in Bosnia.

European Union, he emphasized, needs partners to work with in Bosnia and Herzegovina and their primary partners are the citizens.

“Citizens need to know what the European integration means and how they affect them and their everyday life. We hope that this will improve their lives and in that way influence on their stay in the country. But, failing to form the government is a very bad idea,” he added.

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