In a largely symbolic act, Kosovo officially applied for membership in the European Union on December 14. Albin Kurti, Prime Minister of Kosovo, handed over the formal application during a symbolic visit to the Czech Republic, which holds the rotating presidency of the bloc until December 31. Kurti called the move a “historical” milestone for the former Serbian province and indicated that Pristina hopes to move forward with this complex process as soon as possible.
The move provoked consternation among officials in Belgrade. Serbian President Aleksandar Vučić spoke out strongly against Kosovo’s formal application for EU membership, arguing that the move contravenes pre-existing agreements between the two parties. Vučić specifically accused Kosovar authorities of violating the Washington Agreement signed in September 2020 in which the parties agreed to seek a process of normalization of their economic relations.
The Washington Agreement, signed by Vučić and then head of the Kosovo government, Avdullah Hoti, included a provision whereby Pristina promised not to apply for membership in international organizations, a provision that the Serbian government says has now been violated.