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Declaration of the Regional Women’s Leadership Academy

[:sr]We believe in the social-democratic achievements that the European family of nations relies upon and we want to fight for them in today’s European Union. With that, we primarily mean peace, equality, tolerance, rule of law, solidarity, internationalism, social justice, social cohesion, equitable sustainable development, environment protection, gender equality and universal human rights.

We are aware that any delay in the European Union accession means undermining women’s and human rights in each of our respective countries. Therefore we the Western Balkans activists, are ready to work together and contribute to our countries’ the EU Members States as soon a possible.

We, participants of the Academy, firmly believe in the benefits of European integration. It assists us in overcoming the consequences of the wars in the nineties, in establishing regional cooperation and building our countries as democratic communities and successful economies.

At the moment when we are facing the backsliding of the rule of law, the loss of the achieved women’s rights, uneven development, security threats, massive depopulation of our countries, climate change and lack of regional cooperation, your support is indispensable.

We know that you have invested serious efforts in making the European Council’s decisions different. It is necessary at this moment, with the United Kingdom’s exit from the European Union fast approaching, to reinforce the Union. That can and must be best achieved by completing the EU area with faster integration of the Western Balkan countries.

That Albania and North Macedonia have met all the prerequisites to open the negotiations is evidence-based, and so has Kosovo for visa liberalisation. It is necessary to respond rapidly and correct the errors made by the European Council’s October decisions.

We remain open to active participation in a dialogue on new models of our countries EU accession.

We expect you to continue the unswerving fight for:

  • Confirmation of the Western Balkan’s European perspective and opening the accession negotiations with North Macedonia and Albania, visa liberalisation for the citizens of Kosovo and expedition of the EU integration of Bosnia and Herzegovina;
  • Support to our endeavours in fighting for women’s and human rights and gender equality in our countries;
  • Support our efforts in building a strong regional network of women committed to EU integration.


The participants of the First Social Democratic Regional Women’s Leadership Academy and the Academy’s team


  1. Ana Manojlović Stakić – Belgrade
  2. Sonja Licht – Belgrade
  3. Marijana Pajvančić – Novi Sad
  4. Sonja Lokar – Ljubljana
  5. Marija Srdić – Novi Sad
  6. Biljana Stepanov – Kikinda
  7. Karolina Leaković – Zagreb
  8. Maja Sedlarević – Novi Sad
  9. Adriana Zaharijević – Belgrade
  10. Besima Borić – Visoko
  11. Marina Hughson – Belgrade
  12. Višnja Baćanović – Novi Sad
  13. Erisa Kryeziu – Tirana
  14. Asena Kantarci – Prizren
  15. Sanja Renić – Zenica
  16. Slađana Pavlović Đuričić – Obrenovac
  17. Nataša Dimeska – Prilep
  18. Sonja Kovač – Osijek
  19. Nela Tonković – Subotica
  20. Samra Gabeljić – Tuzla
  21. Ana Avramovska – Ohrid
  22. Maja Sporiš – Zagreb
  23. Svetlana M. Vučetik – Novo Selo
  24. Dragica Anđelić – Podgorica
  25. Vanja Lakić – Banja Luka
  26. Mirela Memić – Lukavac
  27. Amina Jekalović – Breza
  28. Draga Rakić – Vršac
  29. Maja Martinić – Beograd
  30. Dušica Žižić – Podgorica
  31. Dragana Radulović – Podgorica
  32. Svetlana Cenić – Sarajevo
  33. Diellez Arifi – Prishtina
  34. Tringë Arifi – Prishtina
  35. Morena Guce – Tirana
  36. Kristina Prhal Mišić – Zagreb
  37. Ivana Cvetanovcka – Skopje
  38. Miloš Đajić – Belgrade
  39. Igor Jojkić – Belgrade
  40. Tamara Jovanović – Belgrade

[1] Friedrich Ebert Stiftung’s offices in Serbia and Montenegro, together with the Women’s Leadership Academy from Serbia, organized the first “Social Democratic Regional Women’s Leadership Academy“ intended for active women from left-wing political parties and social movements in the Western Balkan countries, aiming at connecting and empowering them in political action based on the values and ideals of social democracy.