facebook
twitter
rss
account
search
search
 

Germany backs Albania's EU admission

Feb. 23, 2013 at 6:57 PM   |   Comments

TIRANA, Albania, Feb. 23 (UPI) -- Germany's foreign minister said he supports Albania's bid for European Union membership but cautioned against nationalist rhetoric that could hurt the process.

German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle visited the Albanian capital Tirana and told Prime Minister Sali Berisha that Albania is close to demonstrating the necessary general qualifications -- a functional democratic government, independent judiciary and stable economy -- for EU inclusion, Deutsche Welle reported Saturday. But Westerwelle said sentiments like those Berisha expressed last year about uniting all Albanians under a common flag run contrary to the EU's purpose.

The speech, which the U.S. State Department also condemned at the time, was seen as a provocation by neighboring countries such as Macedonia, Greece, Montenegro and Serbia where there are large ethnic Albanian minorities, and Kosovo which has a majority of ethnic Albanians.

"The common goal of all the states in the region is, one day, to be part of the European Union, where we have freedom of movement for everybody," Westerwelle said. "That is why a redrawing of national boundaries is out of the question, including the Balkans. In Europe, borders are losing their significance."

© 2013 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
Most Popular
1
Russia prepares militarization of Arctic Russia prepares militarization of Arctic
2
Freedom variant LCS takes to water Freedom variant LCS takes to water
3
Marijuana decriminalized in Philadelphia Marijuana decriminalized in Philadelphia
4
Reports claim Ukraine used cluster munitions in Donetsk city Reports claim Ukraine used cluster munitions in Donetsk city
5
Christian minister helps two lesbian couples sue Mississipi over same-sex marriage ban Christian minister helps two lesbian couples sue Mississipi over same-sex marriage ban
Trending News
Around the Web
x
Feedback