Croatia Reportedly Again Blocks Serbia’s Negotiations with EU

By , 06 Dec 2016, 15:38 PM Politics

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According to Serbian media, Croatia is among EU countries which oppose opening of new negotiating chapters.

According to the Serbian media, Croatia, which has so far repeatedly slowed down Serbia’s progress towards the European Union, mainly due to bilateral issues, is one of EU member states that oppose opening of new negotiating chapters. The reports came one day after the visit of the European Commissioner for Enlargement and Neighbourhood Policy Johannes Hahn to Belgrade, during which he announced the possible opening of three new negotiating chapters by the end of the year, reports Index.hr on December 6, 2016.

Serbian Prime Minister Aleksandar Vučić said on Monday, after his meeting with Hahn, said he was very optimistic about opening of new chapters, and that next week a meeting on the issue would take place. Vučić said he was confident that “Chapter 5 (public procurement) will certainly be opened”, but added that regarding Chapters 25 and 26, relating to education, science and culture, there was no agreement between EU member states.

“They want to see whether they will get something out of Serbia and that will decide whether the chapters will be opened now or later. There are also issues which are coming from Croatia, as well as the issue of relations between Belgrade and Priština. We certainly will not give up our national and state interests just so that someone would allow us to open the chapters”, said Vučić, without disclosing any more details about conditions being put to Serbia.

Serbian media pointed out that Croatia, before the recent opening of Chapters 23 and 24 on human rights and the rule of law, insisted that Belgrade had to change the law on universal jurisdiction for war crimes and demanded a better status for Croatian minority in Serbia and full cooperation with the Hague Tribunal.

That condition has again become current in recent days because the Hague Tribunal (ICTY) withdrew the top secret classification from the international arrest warrants for three associates of Serb national leader Vojislav Šešelj, who are accused before the Tribunal for contempt of court. It demands from Serbia to immediately extradite the members of the Serbian Radical Party to the Tribunal. “Croatia is in the group of countries which have insisted on this particular issue in recent months”, writes the Serbian media.

European Commissioner for Enlargement and Neighbourhood Policy Johannes Hahn said on Monday in Belgrade that he believed the EU member states would very soon agree on the further progress of Serbia in the negotiation Chapters 25 and 26.

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  • Drive carefully on the A7 motorway (15th km) in direction Zagreb between the junctions Matulji and Jušići due to a broken-down vehicle. Traffic is intensified on the roads in direction coast, in direction interior and on the roads along the coast. Sections of the roads closed due to roadworks: -the DC29 from Novi Golubovec (DC29, DC35) -the DC502 Smilčić-Pridraga state road -ŽC5042 Višnjan-Tićan. Traffic is regulated by traffic signals/one road lane is free only: -on the DC1 state road in Knin, on the section Sučević-Otrić in Otrić -on the DC1 state road on the section Jošani-Udbina-Ondić -on the state road DC2 in Vukovar, (Kudeljarska and Priljevo street) -on the state road DC66 Pula- Raša bridge -on the state road DC206 Valentinovo-Petrovsko. With the sunny and dry weather, more and more cyclists and motorists are on the roads. Other vehicles (such as cars or trucks) should look carefully for bicyclists before turning left or right, merging into bicycle lanes and opening doors next to moving traffic. Check your mirrors and be aware of blind spots before turning. While at a stop sign or red light, make a complete stop in order to let bikers pass, and check for unseen riders. Respect the right of way of bicyclists because they are entitled to share the road with you. Cyclists are not immune to traffic violations: pay attention to red lights and practice arm signaling!
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