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Belgrade faces tough choices to realise EU membership goal


Belgrade faces tough choices to realise EU membership goal

Serbia’s government is left facing difficult decisions after the collapse of talks with neighbouring Kosovo.

The country does not recognise Kosovo’s declaration of independence five years ago.

But normalising relations with Pristina is key if Belgrade is to ever realise its goal of joining the EU.

The Serbian economy contracted by 1.7 percent last year, and the government is hoping EU membership would attract new investment from abroad.

But first there is the thorny issue of Kosovo’s Serb minority who live in the country’s north.

Both sides have been unable to strike a deal so far.

In a bid to end the deadlock, Serbia has offered to recognise the authority of Pristina over that part of the country.

But the disagreement stems from how much autonomy the 50,000 Serbs living there would enjoy.

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