Dhe German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock wants to counteract the prevailing Russian influence with visits to the countries of the Western Balkans. Before leaving for the Bosnian capital Sarajevo, Baerbock said she wanted to “make it clear that we will not leave this region in the heart of Europe to the influence of Moscow”.
Europe must be prepared to “strategically invest in its long-term security”. The peace in the Western Balkans is “not perfect”, but it is precious.
Baerbock admitted that many countries in the region “we have disappointed and neglected in recent years”. Actors like Russia, who have no interest in a European future and do not shy away from stoking up unresolved conflicts, are pushing into this open flank.
The German foreign minister said that in recent days Europe has shown that it is “capable of action and determined” to counter Russian President Vladimir Putin’s aggressive actions. Now the Europeans have to show that they are ready with the same energy to “engage us in a creative and future-oriented manner in the countries of the European neighborhood”.
The fact that the European future of the states of the Western Balkans is a political priority for the federal government is also shown by the fact that the new function of a special envoy for these countries has been created, which will be filled by the Green MP Manuel Sarrazin. Sarrazin accompanies Baerbock to Bosnia-Herzegovina, Kosovo and Serbia.
The minister then travels on to the Republic of Moldova, which she says is currently feeling the effects of the Russian war of aggression the most. Baerbock said: “We will not allow the shock waves caused by Russia to spread to other countries in Europe.”
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