7. februar 22:11
24. januar 2023 19:44
Dacic: Serbia's role to remain constructive
BRUSSELS - Serbia is committed to do everything it can to continue on the European path and keep aligning its foreign policy with the EU while looking after its national and state interests, Serbian First Deputy PM and FM Ivica Dacic said on Tuesday after meetings with EU officials in Brussels.
Dacic held separate meetings with EU foreign policy and security chief Josep Borrell, EU envoy for the Belgrade-Pristina dialogue Miroslav Lajcak, Commissioner for Home Affairs Ylva Johansson and the head of the European Parliament committee on foreign affairs, David McAllister.
Dacic said both Borrell and Lajcak had noted Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic's highly constructive and responsible role in the most recent discussions about the Belgrade-Pristina dialogue.
"Both Borrell and Lajcak noted the responsible approach by Serbia, as well as a desire not to have to deal with solving conflicts occurring in Kosovo-Metohija on a weekly basis - which, in our opinion, are solely the fault of Pristina's PM Albin Kurti - but that we try to reach a solution that would provide firmer guarantees and enable peace and stability in the region," Dacic said.
He said that, in a clear manner, he had told the EU officials UN membership for the so-called Kosovo was a red line for Serbia and that the establishment of a Community of Serb Municipalities should not be a contentious issue.
"I told Borrell that, in the very building where we had the meeting, I had signed the Brussels Agreement at the behest of Catherine Ashton and all other international factors, that they came up with a Community of Serb Municipalities and that, ten years on, it is absolutely unacceptable to us that anyone should say they cannot form a Community of Serb Municipalities," Dacic said.
He said that, despite the statements coming out of Pristina, Serbia's role would remain constructive as it needed peace and stability to protect its national and state interests.
When asked by reporters about the next step in the Belgrade-Pristina dialogue, Dacic said it remained to be seen whether the establishment of a Community of Serb Municipalities was possible, but noted that this was a question for Pristina.
Speaking about the alignment of Serbia's foreign policy with the EU, Dacic reiterated this was not about the values Serbia was committed to regarding the Russia-Ukraine relationship, but about "the way the issue of our territorial integrity and sovereignty is reflected in our position in other international organisations and institutions, as well as in our relations with countries supporting Serbia's position on UN membership for Kosovo, and Russia is one of those countries."