New lease on life into the EU’s enlargement strategy | EUCO 06/22

The Council decision this week (23/24.06.2022) will be a historic one. It will breathe a new lease on life into the EU’s enlargement strategy. It will present a chance to overcome the longblocked effort to heal dangerous European divisions and open wounds. This pertains in particular to the countries in the Western Balkans, most notably Albania and North Macedonia, but also others. In doing this, in re-invigorating the enlargement policy, we’re not just being gracious. It is in our own interest not to have a grey zone of minor security, a kind of buffer zone between our borders and those of a revisionist Russia. Not sharing European stability with the Eastern partners that want to join the EU family would undermine our own security and our own future. But let me also be explicit about one obvious conditionality for Europe’s united perspective: without Ukraine’s success in defeating the Russian accession, the candidate status promises would fall flat. That’s why providing the necessary arms without hesitation must be enforced.