Serbia Hopes to Become EU Candidate Next Year
Monday, June 4, 2007 10:07 AM

Serbia's new deputy prime minister, Bozidar Djelic, said on May 29 that he hopes Serbia will become a candidate for EU membership in the second half of 2008, the news agency FoNet reported the same day. Djelic, who was speaking at a gathering of economists in Belgrade, said closer ties with the EU are crucial to Serbia's economic revival, along with cooperation with the ICTY, stronger links to international financial organizations, and efforts to disentangle questions about the future of Kosova from other issues (see "RFE/RL Newsline," April 17, 2007).

"We have had a good start, but we should not think we have succeeded, because there are certain circles who want to link [these issues], and that could cause great problems," Djelic said. Djelic stressed the importance of capturing fugitives from the ICTY. "Serbia has not ended up having [economic] problems because the inflation rate was 6 percent or 8 percent last year, but because General Mladic has not been extradited," Djelic said. In an interview with the Czech daily "Lidove noviny" on May 29, Serbian President Tadic said he believes 2012 is a "realistic" date for Serbia to join the EU. AG

Published in: Serbia Hopes to Become EU Candidate Next Year, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1 June 2007.

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