JCMS: Journal of Common Market Studies , Volume 51 - Issue SUPPL.1 p. 139- 154
In the view of some, 2012 should first and foremost be remembered as the year in which the European Union (EU) received the Noble Peace Prize. In the opinion of the Nobel Committee: ‘The union and its forerunners have for over six decades contributed to the advancement of peace and reconciliation, democracy and human rights in Europe’.1 It can hardly be denied that the gradual juridification of the idea(l) of the building of Europe through concrete steps, starting with the signing of the Treaty establishing the European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC) in May 1952, has made a – if not the most important – contribution in this regard. The geographic advancing of the principles and rules on which European integration was built took place mainly, albeit not exclusively, through the accession of new countries to the European Communities (and later EU). The Union continued on this path also in 2012, as a referendum in Croatia paved the way for its accession to theEUin 2013 and, moreover, candidate statuswas formally granted to Serbia. The advances also continue on a more substantive level, as Monar’s contribution to this issue on developments in the sphere of justice and home affairs highlights.