Articles on Western Balkans

Serbia’s 5G deal with Washington: The art of muddling through (Commentary)

Majda Ruge, Stefan Vladisavljev - 22 September 2020

There is no obvious reason why Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic would turn his back on a relationship with China from which he draws a great deal of political capital.

What Montenegro’s future government means for the Western Balkans (Commentary)

Sinisa Vukovic, Majda Ruge - 15 September 2020

Supporters of Western integration for Montenegro may look hopefully at the smallest – and pro-European – member of the new coalition. But wider forces are likely to overwhelm it.

Hashim Thaci should resign (Commentary)

Carl Bildt, Vessela Tcherneva - 26 June 2020

The indictment for war crimes against Kosovo President Hassim Thaci helpfully upends the poorly conceived US initiative to reconcile Serbia and Kosovo. But it fatally delegitimates Kosovo’s current leadership.

Five mounting challenges for China in the Western Balkans (Commentary)

Vladimir Shopov - 17 June 2020

China has not embedded itself in the Western Balkans as much as it might have done – and may even be looking back on the 2010s as a wasted decade.

A burning issue: How to restart the dialogue between Serbia and Kosovo (Commentary)

Vessela Tcherneva - 11 May 2020

It is the EU’s responsibility to normalise relations between Kosovo and Serbia in the long term. Therefore, the bloc should set the principles of, and drive, the dialogue between the countries.

Why the EU should lead talks between Kosovo and Serbia (Commentary)

Engjellushe Morina - 16 April 2020

An escalation of disagreements over the proposed Kosovo-Serbia land swap could take on a regional dimension and pose a security threat to Europe.

Bouncing back again: How past crises can help Eastern Europe fight covid-19 (Commentary)

Vessela Tcherneva - 08 April 2020

Common standards of health security, tech and information sharing in research and development, and better integration within healthcare supply chains could help Europe take a big step forward.

Finally, some good news: Albania and North Macedonia on the road to EU membership (Commentary)

Tania Lessenska - 06 April 2020

It is in the EU’s interest to continuously emphasise its commitment to Albania and North Macedonia – especially given the growing influence of countries such as China, Russia, and Turkey in the Western Balkans.

The coronavirus in Eastern Europe: Avoiding another Chernobyl (Commentary)

Thornike Gordadze, Joanna Hosa, Dumitru Minzarari, Tatiana Stanovaya, Andrew Wilson - 01 April 2020

Serbia’s coronavirus diplomacy unmasked (Commentary)

Majda Ruge & Janka Oertel - 26 March 2020

The Serbian president has exploited the EU’s internal divisions to insult the bloc and legitimise his policies, as well as his courtship of authoritarian partners.