The European Union is an obstacle to Balkan Development. The desire to get into the European Union is an even bigger obstacle.
With a relative thaw in relations between Ankara and Paris on EU accession, prospects look better for Turkey’s EU membership, though significant challenges remain.
It is high time for EU leaders to revise their negative stances on Turkey’s membership prospects as the country and its leadership seriously start assessing authoritarian alternatives.
The EU-led “dialogue” between Belgrade and Pristina will stall at some juncture because of the failure of the Quint and Pristina to accept a real compromise over the north, one that keeps it within Kosovo but also functionally part of Serbia.
The EU's policies in the Western Balkans - particularly vis-a-vis Kosovo - threaten to undermine its credibility as an international actor and raise profound questions about the very future of its burgeoning Common Foreign and Security Policy.
Should the Kosovo government end funding of the UN Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK) Administration in Mitrovica (UAM), it will cut-off one of the few institutional linkages between north Mitrovica and Pristina.
Over twenty years on from the onset of war in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Ted Lieverman explores the progress of Sarajevo's recovery - or not - from the almost four-year long siege.
Having achieved its aim of demonstrating that the northern resistance to the imposition of Pristina institutions is a genuine popular response, and not the result of criminal coercion, it is now time to reconsider the planned 15th February referendum.
Self-congratulatory remarks by the International Civilian Representative for Kosovo juxtaposes oddly with demonstrations on both the Serbian and Kosovar Albanian sides that underscore that the situation... Read More
With the ISG saying it plans to leave by the end of 2012, even whilst outstanding issues - including the north - remain, the UN must be prepared to play an essential buffering role between the two sides in the status dispute.
The recent "four-point proposal" by Serbia's president, Boris Tadic, may providethe foundation for a lasting solution; one that could be accommodated within the framework of the Ahtisaari Plan.
Whether or not relations with Russia are an obstacle to Serbia's EU integration will depend, in part, on the EU's ability to find a solution that will allow it to integrate both Serbia and Kosovo.
The departure of EULEX from Kosovo would leave a vacuum in the international framework for rule of law which - in the absence of changes to UN Security Council Resolution 1244 - the UN would be required to fill.