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Hoxha: Disappointing if visa liberalisation is linked to the political dialogue with Serbia (media)

By   /  17/07/2019  /  Comments Off on Hoxha: Disappointing if visa liberalisation is linked to the political dialogue with Serbia (media)

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Kosovo’s Minister of European Integration, Dhurata Hoxha, said in an interview to Radio Free Europe that it would be disappointing if the visa liberalisation process for Kosovo is linked to the political dialogue with Serbia. “It would be disappointing to see such tendencies, although we must admit that we had requests, to suspend the tariff [on Serbian goods] or for the resumption of dialogue, related to one another. So, there was a request to suspend the tariff and then resume dialogue. I don’t think these two should be related because this is a process [visa liberalisation] that has so far been purely technical and now it has been politicised in Kosovo’s case … We have earlier seen a clear process, but lately this process has become very unclear for the Republic of Kosovo. I hope these two do not become related because since the beginning we have paid double the price compared to other countries in the region. We had to meet 95 requirements, whereas other countries had 40 – 45 requirements,” she said. Hoxha said it is in Kosovo’s interest to reach a comprehensive agreement on mutual recognition with Serbia, as this would pave the way to a quicker European integration process. “But at the same time, it is not fair for the European Union not to keep its word. We all know that this process has been very clear for all countries of the region: meet the requirements and the decision on visa liberalisation is made. I hope there won’t be such tendencies. We have made this clear and I have said in many of my meetings that Kosovo should not pay another price for visa liberalisation and we should not be asked to do something that has no relation to the visa liberalisation process,” Hoxha said.

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