Italian president backs North Macedonia’s EU membership bid

Sergio Mattarella, the president of Italy, joined a long list of officials on Friday who said they want North Macedonia

and other Western Balkan countries to join the European Union.  

At a press conference in Skopje with North Macedonia's President, Stevo Pendarovski,

Mattarella said at a press conference in Skopje that the continent would not be united.  

Six countries in the Western Balkans are at different points on their way to becoming part of the EU.

North Macedonia and Albania started talks about joining in July. Serbia and Montenegro have made the most progress so far.  

All in all, the process, which is seen as important for reducing Russia's power in the area, is expected to take years.