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Brussels, 24 April 2013
Statement by Commissioner Štefan Füle following his meeting with Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs of Montenegro Igor Lukšić
Commissioner for Enlargement and Neighbourhood Policy, Štefan Füle, met in Brussels today with Igor LUKŠIĆ, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs of Montenegro.
The main focus of their meeting was the country's progress in accession talks. Commissioner Füle congratulated Deputy Prime Minister Lukšić on the recent provisional closure of a second chapter (chapter 26 on education and culture) in the accession negotiations. He stressed the importance of maintaining momentum on the implementation of the necessary reforms.
Commissioner Füle stated: "Progress in the accession process now hinges upon reforms in the area of rule of law. The swift adoption of constitutional amendments strengthening the independence and accountability of the judiciary in line with the recommendations of the Venice Commission is crucial. An adequate follow up to the OSCE/ODHIR recommendations is also a priority. Other priorities include an adequate follow-up to the audio-recordings affair, the fight against corruption and organized crime and a strengthening of capacities and professionalism in public administration."
The Commissioner underlined the EU's increasing expectations towards a country negotiating its accession, which will be measured by results. The submission of Action Plans under chapters 23 (Judiciary and Fundamental Rights) and 24 (Justice, Freedom and Security) are essential in this context.