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Joint Statement by the Ministers of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic and the Slovak Republic on the Council Conclusions on Enlargement

 

Czechia and Slovakia appreciate the efforts made by the German Presidency to achieve progress in the enlargement agenda. Czechia and Slovakia have always been relentless supporters of the enlargement policy for the past 16 years and there has been no change of heart today.

The Council conclusions on enlargement, stabilization and association process need to convey a united message of the EU on the enlargement policy on one hand and the progress and shortcomings of the candidate and potentially candidate countries on the other. They have a direct impact on a number of aspects of the policy and set the stage for the Union´s approach in the coming period.

Given the key role of this document and upon careful consideration we were unable to give our consent to the draft presented for approval today. The text as it stands contained elements including the notion of falsifying history that in our view would be hugely detrimental to the enlargement process and could potentially bring about further complications down the road.

Given the importance of the text and the debate at yesterday´s CRP meeting, we are of the opinion that the final adoption of the text should have taken place in the General Affairs Council.  

The main goal is and remains to adopt the negotiation framework as soon as possible and we believe after further analysis that the current text could complicate its adoption down the road. We are convinced that a solution can be found to accommodate the demands of our colleagues without profound implications for the Union´s approach.

We will not allow that the Union be the judge of our shared history, how we identify ourselves or the language we use. These issues belong to the parties concerned and we are here to support them with the experience of our own healing processes.

Furthermore, we are deeply disappointed that the negotiating frameworks for both North Macedonia as well as for Albania have not been approved.

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