EU urged to start accession talks with Albania, N. Macedonia

BRUSSELS (AP) — The European Commission is urging EU nations to open membership talks with Albania and North Macedonia, saying the Balkans countries “have delivered on reforms.”

EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini on Wednesday recommended opening accession talks with the two countries “as soon as possible. They are ready. This is our assessment.”

However, the expansion of the 28-nation EU over the years has complicated decision-making in the world’s biggest trade bloc, and it’s unclear whether member states will endorse the move.

Mogherini says it’s not as if Albania and North Macedonia would join “the union tomorrow morning. It’s a complicated process.”

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The prospect of EU membership has been a powerful force for reform in the volatile Balkans since the former Yugoslavia disintegrated into war in the early 1990s.

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