EU "light" - without veto

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Ivica Celikovic. Free Press Archive

Starting from the current uncertain geopolitical situation, Macron, after being relieved after winning the presidential race with Le Pen, immediately continued his reformist ideas, proposing a political organization for cooperation in Europe. A kind of "thinner" and looser Union - "EU Lite", which will include those countries that are not yet members.

It is high time Bulgaria lifted its veto against Macedonia. With such a decisive request, announced these days on the eve of the meeting of EU foreign ministers, Sweden again criticized the Bulgarian government for blocking Macedonia's membership negotiations.

Official Stockholm has repeatedly insisted that negotiations with Macedonia should not be postponed any longer, and "especially now, in the current security and political situation in Europe in the light of Russian aggression against Ukraine." The EU's commitments in the Western Balkans, in the interest of the candidate countries joining the Union's common foreign and security policy, should be "coherent, strategic and credible".

Thus, Sofia is expected to be constructive in order to safeguard the EU's credibility and unblock European integration in the region, instead of continuing to tolerate the frantic waving of the veto in Sofia in order to meet some dubious political goals. Good-neighborly "friendly" persuasion is difficult to achieve with one-sided blockades, because the voice of reason hardly penetrates into an atmosphere of boiling and uncompromising stubbornness.

The Bulgarian veto, of course, did not come as a complete surprise, as the blockades have been used successfully in the Balkans for decades. Bulgaria, of course, could only be encouraged by the previous veto of French President Emmanuel Macron, who a few years ago made sure that the EU ramp was raised even higher before the candidate countries for membership in the Western Balkans.

But who should decide in the EU and in what way? And should political power on a larger scale move primarily to the European Parliament, instead of staying in the member states? What is now becoming clear is that many on Europe Day, 9 May, were dissatisfied with the final results of the Macron-initiated conference on the future of the EU, which was then promised by Ursula von der Leyen in her inaugural speech when she took over. the position of President of the European Commission.

Dissatisfaction is spreading in various directions, such as when it comes to the proposal to give the European Parliament the right to propose laws and referendums, but also to gain increased power and decisive influence in the adoption of the EU budget. Another proposal is particularly interesting, which causes great irritation in various places in the EU, when it comes to the possibility of abolishing the most powerful weapon that member states have - the right of veto.

Such proposals are backed by politicians who have long advocated a more federal Europe and who now claim that the latest proposals, coming from the one-year conference on the future of the EU, show the way to a more stable and democratic Union, thus becoming more capable of resist the disintegrative tendencies and challenges of the continent.

So, what is gaining prominence as a proposal for the future of the EU is the abolition of the requirement that a consensus must be reached among EU members on issues in the field of foreign policy. In other words, one member state should not have the right of veto to impede other member states and thus block the development of the EU.

Understandably, such proposals are welcome for many who may already be overwhelmed by the stubbornness of individual member states to veto them as soon as they feel they are expected to give in to common European interests. But that, above all, requires the Union to make changes to the EU treaty (the EU constitution). A majority in the European Parliament advocates such changes, which are also supported by the President of the European Commission. Der Layen actually wants the consensus requirement to be removed in order to speed up EU decision-making processes. In this regard, Der Layen receives some support from the recently re-elected French President Macron.

But among other EU members, the appetites for such a thing are smaller. Bulgaria is one of those countries that opposes, given how enthusiastically it embraces its veto, arguing that now is not the time for the EU to spend its political energy on discussions of constitutional changes. Of course, this does not in the least prevent Sofia from continuing to insist on changes in the Macedonian constitution, fighting unwaveringly for the ramp before entering Europe to remain firmly lowered in front of its neighbor.

It is quite clear that the abolition of the veto in the EU should be preceded by a bolder confrontation than has been seen so far, to overcome the destructive effects of the policy of double standards, with the application of which an almost completely unprepared country , as Bulgaria was a decade and a half ago, and in many respects still is, has been allowed to become a full member of the European family, while Macedonia has been hypocritically denied the same right.

Macron has recently been claimed to be irritating Der Layen for her efforts in various situations to present herself in the light of a common EU voice and to act as EU president, which, of course, in a sense threatens European leadership. ambitions of the French president.

Given the current precarious geopolitical situation, Macron, relieved after winning the presidential race with Le Pen, immediately pursued his reformist ideas, this time proposing the need for another, expanded political organization for co-operation in Europe. A kind of "thinner" and looser Union - "EU Lite", which will include those countries that are not yet members. But it remains to be seen whether Macron, at the same time, will push the realization that the experience of the current veto, especially when used in a destructive way, can not contribute to strengthening the binding tissue of the European family and its expanded political cooperation. Even if it turns into an alternative "light" product.

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