Casey: This Is The Time That Calls For Political Courage That We Do Not See Now

August 31, 2013 12:18 PM

nigel-casey-reutersOn occasion of the meeting at a high level with the EU on the process of the EU integration of B&H, which will be held on 1 October in Brussels, the British Ambassador to B&H Nigel Casey, in an interview for Fena, said that the EU on this occasion would simply ask B&H leaders: ‘’Is B&H ready to adopt decisions that are necessary in order to pave the way for filing an application before the 2014 elections?’’

‘’I expect that after that, the ministers of foreign affairs of the EU would speak to answer the question, which would, I hope, be positive. In this case, we will be ready to do everything that we can to help finalize any kind of decision, or to assist in its implementation in the near future’’, said Casey, and added that a negative response would cause deep disappointment.

As a minimum, a negative answer would change the focus of cooperation between the B&H and the EU and, instead of focus on EU integration, the focus would be on the more difficult issues such as trade in the context of Croatia’s accession to the EU, as well as issues tied with policies on energy and the IPA program.

In this sense, the EU hopes for a positive outcome of the meeting of leaders of the seven leading parties in B&H.

The British Ambassador emphasized that ‘this autumn is the time for the adoption of a decision, the last chance to implement changes in the Constitution that are necessary in order to open the door for membership of B&H to the EU before the 2014 elections’’.

‘’From our standpoint, this is not the time for false optimism, for some further assurances that do not have a basis’’, said Casey.

‘’When it comes to the issue of constitutional change, the reality is such that everyone is still insisting on certain ‘red lines’, in the sense that there exists only limited willingness and readiness to cross the red lines and enter into an area where a solution can be found. This time requires political courage, that we still have not seen’’, said the British Ambassador to B&H.

Assessing the work of B&H leaders, he said that in the last year there was progress around issues tied to state assistance and the census.

He believes that information on the census is also necessary for European integration because it is not possible for the EU to assess an application for EU membership without basic information on the state.

Despite the huge effort of the OSCE Mission on the education system in B&H, the British Ambassador said he was disappointed that more progress has not been made.

‘’In the context of EU accession, which I hope is the future of this country, B&H will be obliged to adopt to certain standards, values and policies in education in order to get closer to EU norms. This is the path that is most promising in terms of solving this problem’’, said Casey in an interview for Fena.

(Source: Dnevni Avaz)

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