Monday, January 11, 2016

Serbian president wonders why Croatia is arming

Serbian President Tomislav Nikolic said on Monday he was surprised by Croatia's announced acquisition of a missile system from Norway.
Source: Beta
</div> <div id='passback-wb558995314'></div>
Nikolic made the comment during his meeting in Belgrade with Russia's Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin.
The president said he found Croatia's plans curious, "considering there will be no armed conflict in the region."

"We will certainly not go to war against Croatia, and a war of Serbia against NATO would be especially meaningless," the Beta agency quoted him as saying, and adding: "Serbia will not invest huge amounts of money in missiles that would be used to shoot at Croatia."

He also said Serbia was grateful to Russia "for caring about her security."

A statement issued by Nikolic's office said the two officials concluded that the excellent political and economic cooperation between Serbia and Russia had contributed to improved military-technical cooperation.

"Serbia will not ask for concessions, although it is right to expect a lot from Russia," Nikolic said.

Speaking about "the situation in Kosovo and Metohija and Euro-integrations," the president said his country is dedicated to dialogue, "but Pristina, on the one hand talks, and works on implementing independence on the other."

"This is a very tricky game, to which we must be ready. It means a plan prepared in advance, and acting on it. I am in favor of first seeing what awaits in chapter 35 (of EU accession negotiations, dedicated to Kosovo) and what the 'biding' agreement with Pristina will look like. It's better to know where we stand right away, than to negotiate chapters for years, only to, in the end, come to something that we cannot accept," Nikolic said.

Rogozin told him that he planned to carry out in the shortest timeframe the order of Russian President Vladimir Putin "to examine in detail, and suggest what Serbia needs."

Rogozin also conveyed Putin's message that he "values highly the results of Nikolic's visit to Russia," describing relations between the two countries as "sincere and brotherly."

"We must make additional efforts to improve significantly our military-technical relations," the Russian official said, offering his assurances that 1999 - when Russia was unable to help Serbia - "will never repeat."

"We are monitoring the situation in the region carefully. We feel much more confident than before, and that is because our military strength has increased. I think Serbia, too, needs military strength... As for Kosovo, justice and Russia are on the side of Serbia," Rogozin said, adding:

"One must arm oneself with patience and not recognize (Kosovo), something that Russia also will never do."

No comments: