5 takeaways from EU’s big Balkan get-together

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Macron plays party-pooper at leaders’ gathering in Sofia.

  • Andrew Gray
  • Politico

SOFIA — It wasn’t a renewal of the wedding vows because the big ceremony never happened.

It was two partners declaring they still want to be engaged — even though one is now playing hard to get.

Albania's Prime Minister Edi Rama (C) speaks with France's President Emmanuel Macron (2ndR) and Lithuania's President Dalia Grybauskaite (2ndL) as they pose for a family photo during an EU-Western Balkans Summit in Sofia on May 17, 2018. - European Union leaders meet their Balkan counterparts to hold out the promise of closer links to counter Russian influence, while steering clear of openly offering them membership. (Photo by Darko Vojinovic / POOL / AFP) (Photo credit should read DARKO VOJINOVIC/AFP/Getty Images)

Albania’s Prime Minister Edi Rama (C) speaks with France’s President Emmanuel Macron (2ndR) and Lithuania’s President Dalia Grybauskaite (2ndL) as they pose for a family photo during an EU-Western Balkans Summit in Sofia on May 17, 2018. – European Union leaders meet their Balkan counterparts to hold out the promise of closer links to counter Russian influence, while steering clear of openly offering them membership. (Photo by Darko Vojinovic / POOL / AFP) (Photo credit should read DARKO VOJINOVIC/AFP/Getty Images)

Fifteen years ago, EU leaders told their western Balkan counterparts at a summit in Thessaloniki they belonged together — and their countries could one day join the European Union.

But only one of those countries, Croatia, has become an EU member while the…

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