International Information Centre for Balkan Studies

Dutch FM to Belgrade: Rule of law and freedom of media must improve

November 4, 2019

The Netherlands’ Foreign Minister Stef Blok told reporters after meeting his Serbia’s counterpart Ivica Dacic that it was clear the country belonged to Europe, but that he believed the states had to honour all the rules to be ready to become the European Union’s member, the FoNet news agency reported on Monday.

He added that Belgrade did a lot of reforms, but that the progress was needed in the rule of law and media freedom as well as in the protection of media and punishment for the attacks on journalists who, he said, should feel safe while doing their job.

Referring to the media freedom, Blok said that “we as the Union could make it a pre-condition for joining the EU.”

He added that the two discussed the EU accession, security in the region and reforms, adding Serbia had impressive financial results.

Dacic said that for the sake of improving bilateral relations it would be good for the Dutch Prime Minister to accept the invitation fro visiting Belgrade.

He thanked The Netherlands for support of the EU integrations and added Serbia started the reforms to strengthen the society’s capacity.

Dacic said the speed of the integration depended on Pristina. “Serbia wants a compromise in which there won’t be winners, but that the winners would be all our nations who live here,” he said.  

Source:  http://rs.n1info.com/English/NEWS/a540907/The-Hague-urges-Belgrade-to-improve-ruleo-of-law-and-media-freedom.html

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