2012 progress report on Montenegro: extracts of the debate
Lieu: Strasbourg, France - European Parliament
End production: 17/04/2013 First transmission: 17/04/2013
Montenegro has made solid progress towards EU membership and buttresses regional stability. Yet it must do more to protect media freedom, women's rights and gender equality, said Foreign Affairs Committee MEPs voting on its 2012 progress report on Tuesday. EU accession talks with Montenegro began on 29 June 2012.
Only the original language version is authentic and it prevails in the event of its differing from the translated versions.
||TITLE : 2012 progress reports on Montenegro: extracts of the debate
||EXTERIOR SHOT of the European Parliament, Strasbourg
||SOUNDBITE (English) Lucinda CREIGHTON, Irish Minister of State for European Affairs, Council
"Montenegro now needs to build on the progress it has achieved so far and to consolidate its reform process. Particular attention needs to be paid to the further development of a solid track record in the area of the rule of law. Sustainable and lasting reform is needed, in particular with regard to tackling the organized crime and cases of corruption included at senior level. The Council has welcomed the Europol report on the issue of organized crime in Montenegro, further efforts are needed to insure the accountability and the independence of the judiciary and to strengthen the administrative capacities the acquis."
||SOUNDBITE (English) Stefan FÜHLE, European Commissioner for enlargement and European neighbourhood policy.
"Further efforts are needed to improve the situation of the Roma, Ashkani and Egyptians communities, and of displaced persons by ensuring access to their civil and political as well as economic and social rights. Our dialogue with Montenegro on these outstanding challenges will continue and intensify during the negotiations."
||SOUNDBITE (English) Charles TANNOCK (ECR, UK)
"I have reservations about the independence and the accountability of the judiciary and some of the training of the judiciary, in addition to the length of Court procedures. The legal framework through chapters 23 and 24 negotiations must also be strengthened to target corruption and organized crime, and one idea would be to introduce an enforceable code of conduct for elected politicians, this would be very helpful. The Montenegro's Parliament should be more involved in the negotiations, and so must the NGO and the civil society.
||SOUNDBITE (Swedish) Anna IBRISAGIC (EPP, SE)
"The day before the decision was to be taken regarding Montenegro and negotiation I've talked to a number of people who were going to take precisely that decision. And at the time, some of my interlocutors said that Montenegro was not ready with its reforms, that there were problems in term of organize crime, the battle against organized crime was not really sufficiently good, not what we would expect, and that a lot remained to be done in regard of various reforms. My argument to counter that mine and other's, was : precisely for that reason we should be starting with those negotiations because that would an opportunity to have an influence on the country, to see progress."
||SOUNDBITE (Slovakian) Ivo VAJGL (ALDE, SL)
"To days ago the accession conference with Montenegro took place in Brussels and there the second negotiating chapter was opened in provision clauses 26, education and culture. I think that this has a symbolic importance and significance because this gives young Montenegrins access to attractive programmes such as Erasmus Mundus, Tempo and some other programmes which are their link to the world. The progress in the negotiations was possible because of the assessment that Montenegro is already well prepared in this area also due to the Irish Presidency."
||SOUNDBITE (English) Ulrike LUNACEK (AT, Greens/EFA)
"The recent presidential elections have been heavily contested by all opposition parties and also many NGOs. And I think it's extremely important for Montenegro, to show its democracy, that thorough and transparent investigations all of these allegations is done, free from ruling political party interest."
||CUTAWAY on European Commissioner Stefan FUHLE
||SOUNDBITE (Greek) Nikolaos CHOUNTIS (EL, GUE/NGL)
English translation :
"Dear colleagues, it's a fact that the case of Montenegro is the easiest case of enlargement from the countries of the western Balkans. However, there are many question marks, if this procedure has as its objective the good of the people. Indeed the Montenegro fulfills many of the criteria for accession, problems have to be resolved, mentioned in the report. But we do not improve the situation for the People in Montenegro in the everyday life of the people. Unemployment increases constantly according to official data, there is poverty, and very big social problems. The measures taken to address this issues are the following : uncontrolled foreign investment, that has change Montenegro, so that it is now one of the most important countries for money laundering ; second : privatization of the investments : that has meant selling cheaply all public assets ; third : investments destructive for the environment instead of good touristic development."
||CUTAWAYS : 2 shots