Kosovo’s membership in the Council of Europe cannot be stopped, says Gërvalla

The head of Kosovar diplomacy, Donika Gërvalla, reacted after Kosovo was left off the agenda of the Council of Europe, saying that the country has already met all the criteria and that membership in this European organization cannot be stopped.

In today’s ministerial meeting of the Council of Europe, which marked the 75th anniversary of the establishment of the most important organization for the protection of human rights on our continent, there were interventions from various member states that requested Kosovo’s membership in the Council of Europe .

Minister Gërvalla said that the decision to leave Kosovo out of the Council of Europe’s agenda is inconsistent with the call of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, which in its Opinion said that Kosovo should join, without additional preconditions.

She said that the letter sent by the Government of Kosovo to the Council of Europe for the association’s draft statute was made in order to overcome the blockade created by the EU’s imposition of the last precondition for the country’s entry into the large European organization.

“Although our offer, consulted with partners of member states, in exchange for a positive decision today in the Committee of Ministers offered a broad platform of joint work, that offer was not taken into account. Consequently, that offer letter lost its actuality and relevance after today’s meeting of the Committee of Ministers,” Gërvalla said.

Minister Gërvalla said that the support of Serbia and its lobbying against Kosovo in the Council of Europe by several EU member states has deprived the citizens of Kosovo of the rights and opportunities offered by the mechanisms of this organization especially for ethnic minority communities and other marginalized communities.

“Kosovo has met all the criteria and conditions for membership in the Council of Europe (CoE). From the opinion of the Legal Department of the CoE confirming that there is no legal obstacle to membership as a European state, from the vote of the ambassadors on April 24, 2023 with 33 votes out of 46, from the positive report of three eminent jurists to the report of the rapporteur Dora Bakoyannis, from the two meetings of the Council for Political Affairs and Democracy (in Paris on March 27 and in Strasbourg on April 16, 2024) until the vote of the Parliamentary Assembly on April 16, 2024 with 131 votes for, 29 against”.

Gërvalla said that Kosovo’s membership cannot be stopped, even if it is delayed due to any opponent of Kosovo or Serbia’s lobbying.

“We are on the right path and doing good work. We have left no stone unturned, always within constitutionality and legality, for the interest of Kosovo”, Gërvalla concluded.