News analysis

Balkans set for fresh turmoil after Macedonia vote fails

Possibility that Parliament may be dissolved and country's admission to EU, Nato delayed

Europe's Balkans - a key pathway for organised crime and illegal immigration into the continent - have been plunged into further uncertainty after a referendum in Macedonia failed to approve a deal which would have allowed the country to join the European Union and the US-led Nato military alliance.

EU politicians are scrambling to reassure Macedonia and its immediate neighbours that the referendum's failure represents merely a setback rather than a terminal blow to regional security arrangements. But the sense of deep disappointment is keenly felt in many European capitals.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 02, 2018, with the headline 'Balkans set for fresh turmoil after Macedonia vote fails'. Subscribe