Montenegro PM Abazovic lends support to the Open Balkans initiative

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Source: AVO PRELEVIC / AFP

The Open Balkans initiative was formally launched in 2019 by Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic, Albanian Prime Minister Edi Rama and North Macedonia Prime Minister Zoran Zaev as a regional initiative intended to boost economic links in the countries of the Western Balkans. Kosovo Prime Minister Albin Kurti opposes the initiative as did the previous Montenegrin government.

Abazovic told Pristina-based Klan Kosova TV that the plan intends to include all six countries of the Western Balkans.

“Open Balkan was made for six countries, not made for five and a half, or three and a half countries – it was made for six. Everyone who takes part represents themselves and their country. My opinion, and I might be wrong, is that the greatest regional interest is to have Kosovo in every regional initiative,” he said.

He rejected claims that Open Balkans was Vucic’s initiative intended to create a “Greater Serbia” – because, he said, “Albania is involved.”

According to Abazovic, “the most important thing is to increase trust among countries in the region.”

“That requires communication and we only have that twice a year – in Berlin and in Vienna, where prime ministers meet, talk, and have coffee – and then no one communicates with no one afterwards. I think that’s wrong,” Abazovic said.

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