Despite efforts to bring economic and democratic reforms, many countries in Southeast Europe remain beset by corruption. This page highlights efforts to root out the corrupt practices that stifle economic growth and brings attention to efforts by NGOs and citizens who are working to improve the region.
Funds taken from illegal enterprises will go to improving schools and hospitals.
A lack of transparency has been the most common form of political influence in the education system.
Whistleblowers in the region are being urged to report irregularities and cases of corruption in the public sector, but only the bravest take action.
By seizing criminals' assets, countries in the region hope to prevent corruption and crime.
The former chairman of Hellenic Postbank and other executives and businessmen are among 29 people charged in a loan scheme worth about 500 million euros.
A new verdict against Romania's former prime minister indicates the judiciary's growing independence and is a step forward in the country's anti-corruption efforts, bloggers say.
Romania launches new regulations for the certification of traditional products to help local producers reach EU standards and sell their products abroad.
A recently discovered corruption scheme involves hundreds of doctors and pharmacists.
The Serbian Prosecutor's Office for Organised Crime has completed its preliminary investigation of 24 privatisations.
Greek authorities act to restore trust in the armed forces.
The Albanian government wants to address crime and corruption in the customs administration and accredit its universities.
Both countries institute measures to deal with corrupt practices, including in the judiciary.
Secretly debated changes to Romania's Criminal Code pose a threat to democratic values in the country, the international community and experts warn.
Focused efforts to stop government fraud are showing results in some countries.
Corruption in Bosnia and Herzegovina hurts the business climate and deters both local and foreign investment, officials say.
University professors from the region are asking for countries to exercise stronger control over university diplomas in order to eliminate counterfeit degrees.
Croatia is making headway in its anti-corruption efforts as it targets high-level officials.
BiH should take more sufficient steps to fight high-level corruption, the EU says.
Almost 90 percent of citizens in BiH do not trust the country's politicians, a recent survey shows.
Montenegro is expected to announce a plan to stop corruption in the healthcare sector by the end of the year.
Bloggers criticise a decision by Romania's general prosecutor to remove anti-corruption prosecutor Lucian Papici.
Open government principles are important for anti-corruption and EU accession.
By pursuing a case against INA and MOL, Croatia is showing that it is actively battling corruption, an expert said.
Analysts praise the court sentencing Akis Tsochatzopoulos and 16 co-defendants and urge Greece to continue to pursue corruption cases.
A survey of citizens and police officers indicates that corruption is an issue among Serbia's traffic police.
Strengthening the role of the parliament and MPs, and motivating citizens to take a part in the fight against corruption are the main goals of a new anti-corruption organisation in Serbia.
Rigorous new measures of the Croatian tax administration are yielding results.
Former Cyprus Interior Minister Dinos Michaelides may be the first extradited official to face trial in Greece.
The government is moving more aggressively against tax evaders as it attempts to climb out of debt.
The November election will be particularly watched as it will be the first in 14 years to include all of Kosovo.
Bulgaria needs to ensure a fair electoral process, transparency in government and business and launch judicial reform to fight corruption, experts say.
The dismissal is being seen as a sign that the government will have a zero-tolerance policy for perceived inappropriate behaviour.
Huge losses have a serious economic impact on the region and contribute to crime, terrorism and security concerns, experts said.
News media leaders say the explosion outside of a journalist's home was meant as retaliation for his investigative reports on corruption.
Cameras are intended to monitor everything that is happening at toll booths.
Only the joint efforts of the authorities, NGOs, media and the civil society will bring visible results in the fight against widespread bribery by traffic police in the region, experts say.
A recent report lauds the success of Albania's anti-corruption efforts.
Experts said the website will increase citizen participation in determining municipal budgetary priorities.
The new office will focus on anti-corruption efforts at all levels and is a crucial component of the country's EU accession efforts.
The action follows a recommendation by the EU to address corruption in the government.
Online anti-corruption efforts in Kosovo show promising results.
Experts see different reasons for parliament's decision in a former Greek finance chief's case.
An increasing number of people in Serbia, Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina seek legal and other assistance to address instances of corruption.
Authorities arrest 13 in an anti-trafficking operation, including a police officer from the border service.
Corruption among public officials in Kosovo will "undermine the progress of the country" and "slow down" its path toward the EU, international and local experts warn.
BiH authorities are targeting police and state officials in anti-corruption stings.
Janez Jansa was convicted of seeking a 2 million euro bribe when he was prime minister of Slovenia.
Efforts to stem corruption in the region's custom sector are working, but more needs to be done, analysts said.
"By protecting the whistleblowers, we protect ourselves," the Serbian ombudsman says.
A high-profile corruption case has sparked calls for radical overhaul in the justice system.
Medical workers' low income leads to corruption in region's health care system "directly affecting" patients' health, bloggers said.
By pressing charges stemming from corruption against one of Serbia's most influential businessmen, observers said the state is earning the public's support.
Authorities say FBiH Deputy Prime Minister Jerko Ivankovic-Lijanovic and others bought votes to sway the 2010 election.
Citizens say that joining the EU will also help boost the fight against corruption.
Communication and regional-level discussion are some of the most effective tools in the fight against organised crime and corruption, officials and experts say.
The Bosnia and Herzegovina government passed the amendments to the state law on conflicts of interest, but NGOs claim the changes fall short of transparency.
Analysts warn that counterfeit money is becoming a serious problem in the Balkans.
In spite of opposition criticism, Central Bank Governor Bedri Hamza tells SETimes he is determined to maintain the bank's independence.
The arrest of FBiH President Zivko Budimir and 18 other officials is a major crackdown on organised crime, agency said.
The privatisation of Kosovo's Post-Telecom will benefit the country's budget, but some officials said the process was not transparent.
The recent arrest of 39 students and professors in Croatia brings the fight against corruption in the sector into the regional spotlight.
Macedonia is making an effort to crack down on corruption, officials and analysts said.
The anticorruption agency and EU delegation are asking citizens to report fraudulent incidents.
Police detain Croatian Handball Federation president Sandi Sola and members of his family in the high-profile arrests.
The authorities estimate corruption losses from Telekom Slovenije at 25 million euros.
By promoting transparency and allowing anonymous reporting, states are working to stop corruption in higher education.
The new strategy intends to take zero tolerance approach in fight against corruption.
Integrity Observers gives the public access to procurement contracts, in an effort to reduce the possibility of corruption.
Bloggers said that teaching ethics and having authorities act on plagerised materials will help stop the growing problem.
Serbia's public sector and Anti-corruption Agency join forces to detect and prevent corruption.
Croatia has lost more than 11 billion euros through corruption and commercial mispricing.
Although the new prime minister has plans to improve things, she may meet resistance from the opposition.
Electric power theft costs Balkan companies millions of euros.
Recent corruption charges against a Prizren mayor and five other officials raise citizen hopes that the judicial system is doing its job.
Politicians are sentenced to jail time for corruption offences as the government gets tough on wrongdoers.
In an effort to eradicate another of corruption's many faces, officials in Bosnia and Herzegovina and Serbia are increasing dedication to their defence sectors.
Belgrade is making progress on the country's most significant challenges.
Too many institutions and the lack of co-ordinated legislation are hindering the fight against organised crime in the region, analysts say.
Organised gambling rings and criminal groups have corrupted football, threatening the integrity of the world's most popular sport, officials said.
The government is making efforts to send tax cheats to jail.
Almost twice times as many citizens said the government is doing a good job fighting crime and corruption compared to eight months ago.
Past payments issued by state-owned Kolubara coal mining company has caused accusations of corruption.
Experts say co-operation among regional countries is important in battling smuggled goods.
Macedonia may create a model system to promote integrity through an exchange of information from anti-corruption agencies.
MPs reject investigation of Socialist leader, two former premiers over Swiss bank list.
Poor economic conditions lead to large numbers of undocumented workers.
A revision to the change of ownership is the expected next step in suspect privatisations.
Fraud is alleged in the handling of missing money.
Experts said employment by political patronage can be overcome by more private sector jobs.
Regional countries are asking Serbian authorities to broaden their investigation into tycoon Miodrag Miskovic.
The opposition said a recent report on money that was transferred out of Albania through illegal activities proves that the government is corrupt.
The December arrest could signal a new stance in Athens on fighting corruption.
The number of contraband cigarettes sold in Bulgaria today is much smaller than several years ago, according to customs officials.
Bloggers are relieved that the government is finally tackling shady privatisations, which they perceive as the root of organised crime.
Illegal fishing in Lake Ohrid has become big business in Macedonia and Albania.
Laws in the region do not adequately protect whistleblowers or provide effective follow-up mechanisms to their disclosures.