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Albania’s Rama: Stalled Western Balkans accession to EU 'disgrace'

Published June 23,2022

Albania's Prime Minister Edi Rama described the stalled accession process for Albania and North Macedonia to join the European Union a "disgrace."

North Macedonia and Albania applied for EU membership in 2004 and 2009 respectively. The two countries have since been waiting to enter formal accession talks, with Bulgaria most recently blocking progress in a dispute linked to the region's national identity, history and languages.

"It is a shame that a NATO country, Bulgaria, kidnaps two other NATO countries, Albania and North Macedonia, in the midst of a hot war in Europe's backyard with 26 other countries sitting still in a scary show of impotence," Rama said.

"It's a good thing to give [Ukraine] candidate status, but I hope the Ukrainian people will not make many illusions about it," Rama said when asked about Ukraine's aspiration to join the bloc.