The enlargement of the European Union towards the Western Balkans has been pending for more than a decade. "The EU's current problems and external challenges – Russia, China, the Gulf States and Turkey – do not make it any easier for these countries to move faster," lamented Ivan Vejvoda, director for Europe at the Institut für die Wissenschaften vom Menschen-Institute for Human Sciences (IWM). However, he is convinced that the Balkan countries will one day become members of the EU. "The question is when," he said during his speech at the FAES seminar ‘The Balkan countries: future members of the EU?’
"The EU's peace project is at stake, because when you look at the map of the continent you see that there is a hole in the construction of Europe", warned Vejvoda, who reiterated that "it is important for the European Union to maintain its commitment to what was said more than 10 years ago about these countries becoming members".