8 October 2015 The National Assembly delegation to the European Union-Serbia Stabilisation and Association Parliamentary Committee in Strasbourg
Thursday, 8 October 2015
Fourth Meeting of European Union-Serbia Stabilisation and Association Parliamentary Committee in Strasbourg
The European Union-Serbia Stabilisation and Association Parliamentary Committee held its fourth meeting on 7 and 8 October 2015, at the European Parliament seat in Strasbourg, co-chaired by Igor Soltes, Vice-Chair of the EP delegation, and Vladimir Orlic, heading the Serbian National Assembly delegation.
The MEPs emphasised the notable progress Serbia had achieved in the EU accession talks, regional cooperation and the last round of negotiations and agreements reached in the dialogue on normalisation of relations between Belgrade and Pristina. All the members of the joint committee, repeatedly, appealed to the Council of the European Union and the member states to open the first negotiation chapters with Serbia by the end of the year, since there is no obligation the Serbian Government and its institutions had not fulfilled. They said they were sure that the next meeting of the joint Parliamentary Committee in Belgrade in March 2016, would seriously focus on topics of importance for the opened EU accession negotiation chapters.
One of the topics tackled at the meeting was the current refugee crisis facing Serbia and the EU member states, as well as the other neighbouring countries. The members of the joint committee welcomed the EU’s readiness to step up humanitarian and financial assistance to Serbia in order to help with continuous, immense refugee pressures, and urged the EU members states to address the current refugee crisis in a coordinated manner with full involvement of the enlargement countries affected by the extraordinary flow of migrants.The members of the committee thanked Serbia for its swift humanitarian response and substantial actions taken to provide the best possible shelters for thousands of refugees on its territory. They concluded that Serbia, its authorities and citizens have dealt with the crisis in a very humane and responsible manner, respecting human rights and securing the best possible conditions for the refugees from war-torn areas, adding that they were sure a common solution would be found to this and any future problems.
Co-chairs Orlic and Soltes agreed that the meeting was conducted in a more than friendly atmosphere of constructive debate and resulted in excellent conclusions. They stressed as very important the fact that the joint committee adopted a Declaration and Recommendations which, both sides were pleased to note, highlighted Serbia’s achievements and the standards necessary for the European integration process. The two partners are firmly committed to send a clear message to the EU Council and the member states that the first negotiation chapters with Serbia should be opened by the end of the year, considering that the Serbian institutions have fulfilled all the assumed obligations. They said that that the next meeting of the joint Parliamentary Committee will focus on topics of importance for the opened EU negotiation chapters and concluded that the establishment of a fundamental system of values, based on principles highly valued by both sides, is a primary common goal.
Click here to download the Declaration and Recommendations.