“Instead of Europeanizing Kosovo, We Have Balkanized EULEX”

“Instead of Europeanizing Kosovo, We Have Balkanized EULEX”

About half a year ago, I wrote an essay under the title “Albania Is the Future of Europe.” Much of the text dealt with the common misconception among representatives of international institutions and foreign governments that they can decisively influence Albania and move it toward more “democracy,” while using the current framework of EU politics and policies. Following an argument […]

Mogherini: Albania “Ready To Run, Hopefully, Inshallah!”

Mogherini: Albania “Ready To Run, Hopefully, Inshallah!”

After the meeting of EU–Albania Stabilisation and Association Council, Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs and EU High Representative Federica Mogherini held a press conference, in which she touched upon the perennial subject of the opening of the EU accession negotiations, as well as the current political situation in the country. Referring to the recent report […]

Balkans Media Days: The Anger of Journalists, the Silence of the EU

The Balkans Media Days have just ended this November 10 in Tirana. Far from the expected political correctness, the debates gave rise to intense discussions and drew a very dark portrait of press freedom in the region. But did the EU receive the message?

Balkans Media Days: The Anger of Journalists, the Silence of the EU

In a crowded hall attended by nearly 250 media professionals, the EU–Western Balkans Media Days, a regional meeting organized by the European Commissioner for European Neighborhood and Enlargement Negotiations (DG NEAR) Johannes Hahn, is off to a flying start in Tirana on Thursday  November 9. Recognizing the importance of press freedom, the Albanian Prime Minister […]

Albania Consolidates Position on European Drug Market

Albania Consolidates Position on European Drug Market

Date presented in the National Drug Report 2017 of the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction (EMCDDA), an EU agency, show that over the last year Albania has consolidated its position in the European drug market. In last year’s report, the EMCCDA stressed the growing role of Albanian cannabis producer and main transit […]

EU Sewerage Project in Shëngjin, Delays Caused by Dysfunctional Government and Negligent Contractor

EU Sewerage Project in Shëngjin, Delays Caused by Dysfunctional Government and Negligent Contractor

In September, Exit reported on the EU-financed project “Construction of the Sewerage Systems in Vlora, Ksamil, Kavaja, and Shëngjin, Albania,” dating from 2011 but only finished at the end of 2016. Based on redacted documents provided to Exit by the European Commission, it became clear that the project had suffered from massive delays, even though the documents didn’t clearly […]

Stabilitocracy and the EU

Stabilitocracy and the EU

During the last decade, the European Union has undergone a series of crises, including the global financial crisis, the Eurozone crisis, the refugee crisis, and Brexit. These are accompanied by geopolitical instability mainly in the southern and eastern periphery Europe as well as with the policy failure of EU’s Ostpolitik after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine (Crimea). Above all, […]

EU Celebrates Media Freedom, Blocks Exit on Twitter

EU Celebrates Media Freedom, Blocks Exit on Twitter

There are few things that so beautifully illustrate the hypocrisy of the European Union than its recently announced EU–Western Balkans Media Days on November 9 and 10, in which “[o]ver 250 representatives of media and media-organisations, stakeholders and policymakers from the Western Balkans and the EU will meet at the media conference in Tirana on […]

EU Has To Move Beyond Stabilocracy in Balkans

EU Has To Move Beyond Stabilocracy in Balkans

The Balkans are not as exciting as they once were. The large-scale violence that made the region a central concern of European policy in the 1990s is no longer a feature of Balkan politics. That’s progress, of course. But the absence of violence does not mean an absence of problems. Persistent economic weakness, growing public […]

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