İlknur Şebnem Öztemel-TDO- 19.04.2017 Albanian Prime Minister, Edi Rama, argued that the EUwill face a “nightmare” scenario if it does not allow Albania and other Balkan states to join the bloc.
He said“There is a lack of understanding, or a lack of vision in not realizing that this region needs Europe, but Europe needs this region too, for a secure and safe Europe’’. He added ‘’How can the union be secure and safe if the Balkans will go crazy?How can the European Union allow at its own heart a grey zone where other actors can have a larger influence than the EU itself? This is nonsense in terms of security, in terms of safety”.
Albania is an official candidate for membership to the EU. However, most of the member states are against enlargement policy of the union and it seems Albanian authorities are impatient to wait for more. Albanianalternative to EU is creating a confederation with Kosovo which was liberated from Serbian aggression by NATO interference and majorly home of Albanians, although it has been strictly prohibited by the Kosovan constitution.
Rama told to Politico in an interview that this movecould be a “possible alternative” to EU membership.He said‘’The only way to keep the Balkans in this peaceful and cooperative mode is to keep the path to the EU open, to keep the perspective clear, to keep emotions about the EU positive’’.He added ‘’No one would like to turn in on themselves and look for smaller unions, everyone would like to unite in the big union but if there’s no hope, no perspective, no space, then, of course, little unions may happen”.
European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker has repeatedly warned European authorities for rising possibility of aggression in the region. In the last month, Juncker said to the US Vice President Mike Pence as “If we leave them alone - Bosnia-Herzegovina, Republika Srpska, Macedonia, Albania, all those countries — we will have war again”.
If you visit Kosovo, you can see Albanian flag flying over almost all privately owned places, cars and even schools. There is more possibility for you to come back to home with souvenirs, t-shirts, magnets that Albanian flag printed on than Kosovan flag. You can only feel the difference between Albania and Kosovo when you see buildings and serviceman of international organizations, ruins, martyr’s cemeteries, statues of national heroes and when you go to northern parts of the country. Serbian minority mostly live in northern cities, close to the Serbian border, especially in Mitrovica. Regarding this, you can see divided cities between Muslim-Christian neighborhoods in northern countryside. Kosovars mostly feel and define themselves as ethnicallyAlbanians and ‘’ European-Muslims’’. Recently, tensions between Serbia and Kosovo increased as Serbian authorities send a train which has been written ‘’Kosovo is Serbian’’ on, to Kosovo. If we look at the recent developments in the area,it would not be wrong to say that Albanians, Kosovars, Bosnians, Muslims living in Balkan peninsula did not forgetwhat happened in 90’s, ready to defend themselves and preserve their rights in case of a negativity. EU should not ignore those people and be fair in its actions about Balkans.