Ioannis Armakolas gave an interview to Athina 9,84fm on the recent EU – Western Balkans Summit in Slovenia, where once again, countries like France appeared cautious on the issue of enlargement and the EU’s ability to “absorb” new members.
“The European project is currently in crisis” he said, something that in countries like France and the Netherlands brings forward questions on whether new member – states should join the Union, before the EU’s own reform process. However, as he noted, member – states like Greece, Croatia, Slovenia and others in favor of the enlargement, should make a “coalition” not only to offer their help on specific issues, like the Skopje – Sofia conflict, but mainly to convince the skeptics that within a decade – a period needed for countries like Albania or North Macedonia to join the EU – the Union would have been reformed by solving its own internal issues.
Asked about a possible EU offer of a “special relation” to the Western Balkans, I. Armakolas said that this could definitely have adverse consequences for these countries, their neighbours and in the long term, for the EU itself.
You can listen to the interview in Greek here: [18:58 -29.34]
You may read the transcript of the interview, in Greek, here