Cross-party statement from the European Parliament to overcome Serbia's political blockade

17. Juli 2020

After receiving a request this week from the Serbian opposition to the EU institutions to further engage in the peaceful and politically sustainable resolution of the ongoing political crisis in Serbia and to facilitate creation of new instruments that would help achieve this goal, we, the undersigned MEP-s from 3 different political Groups, have decided to respond to this request. Our ambition is to enable all relevant political parties and movements in Serbia to solve the crisis and this way enable revival of democratic development of Serbia for the interest of its citizens. We invite the European Commission to create a senior expert group to publish reports on state and media capture in Serbia.

Serbian democracy is currently endangered by authoritarian tendencies of the government, unfair electoral conditions and lack of basic media freedom and rule of law. Despite the recent general elections, the on-going demonstrations in the streets and their violent suppression, which are of a great concern to us, are clear signs Serbia is facing grave challenges to its future. Without the solid response and solution to listed problems, Serbia has no stable future and unfortunately no real EU membership perspective. Therefore, our commitment to helping Serbia become an EU member state requires from us to support initiatives that aim at increasing EU engagement in improving Serbian democracy and enable it to follow the path of prosperous future in the European family of democratic countries.

Creation and unbiased work of the senior expert group reports on state and media capture, as requested by the Serbian opposition, would help identify and assess some of the key problems currently plaguing Serbian democracy and would represent a good baseline for further engagement of EU institutions and a starting point for identified necessary changes in Serbia. Coordinated efforts of the European Parliament and the European Commission have proven effective in solving the political crisis in other countries in the region, and could prove effective in Serbia as well.

To this end, the European Parliament should support cross-party dialogue on strengthening the democratic pillar of the new enlargement methodology as a means to implement the EU reform agenda, by ensuring the widest possible societal consensus through the engagement of all the main Serbian political parties in the continuation of the EP facilitated Inter-Party Dialogue.

Viola von Cramon, MEP, Greens/EFA

Tanja Fajon, MEP, S&D

Klemen Groselj, MEP, Renew Europe