European Union: MEPs adopt Macedonia resolution

MEPs by 503 votes to 113, with 45 abstentions have adopted a resolution on the 2016 progress report for Macedonia of the European Commission, MIA reports from Strasbourg.

In the resolution, the European Parliament says it welcomes the formation of a new government on 31 May and urge it, together with all political parties, to restore confidence in the country and its institutions.

MEPs also call on the new government to maintain efforts towards EU integration and fully commit to robust reforms in the areas of rule of law, justice, corruption, fundamental rights, home affairs and good neighborly relations.

"Once there is tangible progress in implementing the 2015 Przino agreement and on urgent reform priorities, the European Parliament will support opening EU accession negotiations," says the resolution.

Looking back to 2016, the EP regrets that Skopje is continuing to backslide in the reform of its judiciary and deplore recurrent political interference in the appointment and promotion of judges and prosecutors.

MEPs are also concerned about the political attack against and obstructions to the work of the Special Prosecutor’s Office.

MEP Ivo Vajgl, who is also the rapporteur on Macedonia, said the EP has taken positive note of Macedonia's progress towards EU membership. "The new government has committed to important reforms, which enabled the country to hold transparent elections and overcome a protracted political crisis. Macedonia should now accelerate the process of adopting EU standards, values and principles, thus also contributing to the stability in the Western Balkans," he said.

The resolution has underwent slight changes that took into account the evolution of developments in Macedonia. A total of 40 amendments were submitted.

Vote on the resolution, after being debated in February by the Foreign Affairs Committee and in a plenary session, has been delayed several times due to the political crisis in Macedonia. After the appointment of a parliament speaker and the formation of a new government, the European Parliament decided to include the resolution, prepared by MEP Vajgl, in the agenda.

FULL TEXT of the resolution HERE


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