Reuters reports that promise of EU membership is no longer a guarantee for the remaining six Balkan countries that are not yet members – a group that includes Macedonia which recently went through an imposed name change precisely to achieve this goal. The news agency quotes diplomats from EU countries who say that the Union could not agree to restate the promise, first made 20 years ago, during the summit with Balkan countries next week.

At the summit, the EU planned to restate its promise made 18 years ago to give “its unequivocal support for the European perspective of the Western Balkans,” according to a draft summit declaration dated Sept. 11 seen by Reuters. That has undergone at least two rounds of talks with no agreement, diplomats said. EU states would not disclose their positions, but wealthy northern countries such as Denmark, France and the Netherlands fear a repeat of the rushed accession of Romania and Bulgaria in 2007 and the poorly managed migration of eastern European workers to Britain that turned many Britons against the EU, Reuters reports,

Serbia and Montenegro are currently conducting negotiations. Macedonia was hoping to begin the accession talks after the imposed name change that removed the Greek veto, but found itself stuck again, first by France and now by Bulgaria. Albania is currently blocked along with Macedonia, being part of a de-facto group with us. And Bosnia and Kosovo are even further away in their EU prospects. The new development comes as Serbia and Kosovo are locked in a new, growing row.

“They have to misbehave to be noticed,” said a senior EU diplomat in Brussels involved in Balkan policy. “There is deterioration in the Balkans that stems from the lost interest in EU capitals.” The EU and the United States have appealed for calm and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen began a three-day trip to the six Balkan countries on Tuesday to show the EU executive’s commitment to the region, Reuters reports, while warning that countries like Russia and China are poised to step into the region, unless the EU fills the power vacuum.

The agency divides the EU member states into two camps. It lists Slovenia, Austria, Italy, Croatia and the Baltic countries as pro-enlargement, while the Netherlands, Denmark and France are skeptical after the poor management of the enlargement toward Romania and Bulgaria.