Serbia: Background and U.S. Relations [November 16, 2018]   [open pdf - 1MB]

"Following the conflicts in the 1990s in the countries of the former Yugoslavia, the prospect of membership in the Euro-Atlantic community and the active presence of the United States and European Union (EU) in the Western Balkans provided a level of stability that allowed most of the countries of the region to adopt economic and political reforms. During this time, Slovenia and Croatia joined the EU. These countries, along with Albania and Montenegro, also joined NATO. Other countries of the Balkans are pursuing EU and NATO membership. However, many observers in Europe and the United States have expressed concern that political stability in the Western Balkans, sometimes referred to as Europe's 'inner courtyard,' remains tenuous. Several of these countries have experienced political crises, sometimes involving third- party interference, as well as stagnating economies, high unemployment, and high rates of emigration. These crises have raised concerns that any decrease in EU or U.S. presence could create a regional vacuum in which transnational crime, radicalization, or terrorism could flourish. Furthermore, some observers are concerned with the growing economic and political role of Russia, China, and other states whose agendas in the Western Balkans might conflict with U.S. and EU interests in the region."

Report Number:
CRS Report for Congress, R44955
Public Domain
Retrieved From:
Congressional Research Service: https://crsreports.congress.gov/
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