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How did the EU Conditionality Mechanism Change for the Protection of Roma Minorities in 2004, 2007 and 2013 Enlargements?

Pinar Sayan

Enlargement is usually accepted as the most efficient foreign policy of the EU. By the mechanism of conditionality, the EU has a significant amount of power over the candidate states. However, the crucial point about the EU conditionality is its flexible nature. Although certain criteria have to be met by the candidate states, there is not a single receipt for all candidates; the content of the conditionalities depends on various factors. This suggestion is especially valid for minority rights conditionalities since there is no common minority protection policy in the EU. Although "respect for and protection of minorities" is a part of the Copenhagen Criteria, there is no objective measurement to assess the compliance of the candidate states to this criterion. The main question of this article, thought, how did the EU use the mechanism of conditionality for Roma minorities during the enlargement process in 2004, 2007 and 2013 enlargement periods, since Roma is the most victimized and discriminated minority group in Europe according to various reports. The main argument of this essay is the problems of 2004 enlargement led the EU to modify conditionalities mechanism for the 2007 and 2013 enlargements however, they are still inadequate for the protection of Roma population.

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