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International Information Centre for Balkan Studies



Serbian president "surprised by US ambassador's statement"

Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic said late on Tuesday that he was surprised by US Ambassador Kyle Scott saying that "not only Pristina is to blame.".

MARCH 27, 2019

Scott said the blame for the current relations between Belgrade and Pristina is also the absence of dialogue on both sides.

"I am surprised by Scott's statement. Hang on, man. They say, don't shift the blame. Say what we are guilty of?," Vucic said while on a Happy TV talk show. 

The journalists remarked that some have asked Vucic to seal off passages towards Kosovo and Metohija "airtight." 

"Now I have a question for these smarties. Do they know that we would seal off our people in Kosovo that way, endanger their lives and supplies? Or do they think we can pass a law that says, 'entry allowed to Serbs, but not to Albanians'? That's 1932, Hitler's Germany and Serbia will not pass such laws," Vucic concluded. 

Vucic said that former and current high ranking US State Department officials, Wess Mitchell and Matthew Palmer, criticized him in meeting and said he was "unfair" in the context of the dialogue with Pristina because, thanks to the engagement of Serbia, a number of countries have withdrawn their recognition of Kosovo. 

Vucic asked whether the United States complained to Pristina when Madagascar recognized Kosovo - as it was now complaining when Madagascar withdrew that recognition. 

The president pointed out that the United States is calling on the countries not to withdraw recognition, and that representatives of the Dominican Republic and Suriname showed him a circular letter asking them not withdraw their recognition of Kosovo. 

Vucic asked in what was Serbia was "unfair" and again pointed out to a number of irresponsible decisions made Pristina, among which were "anti-civilization taxes (on goods from central Serbia) which are inappropriate for the 21st century" as well as Pristina's platform that is not for dialogue, but against it. 

"I pleaded with (EU foreign policy chief) Federica Mogherini not to allow them pass this platform, we received its draft six months earlier, I warned them, they told me that it would not come come to that. Pristina passed it anyway," said Vucic. 

He also pointed out that the Community of Serb Municipalities(ZSO) has not yet been formed in Kosovo, and that they have even voted in favor of establishing the so-called Kosovo army, which, the president recalled, is in contrast even with the "Kosovo Constitution." 

During the show, Vucic also announced that French President Emmanuel Macron will visit Serbia in July, and that he received a confirmation of the exact date. 

"Macron is coming, and before that - if everything is fine and I don't resign or get killed in the meantime - I will have the opportunity to see President Xi Jinping in China on April 25, which is a very important meeting, and I believe that I will meet (Russian leader) Vladimir Putin in China as well," Vucic said. 

He said he was convinced that he would have the opportunity for another one or two important encounters, but did not reveal who he was referring to. 

Asked whether he plans to intensify cooperation with the US and, perhaps, visit there, Vucic said he never "begs for meetings." 

"I am waiting for an invitation for America. When the call comes, I will go," said Vucic.

Source: https://www.b92.net/eng/news/politics.php?yyyy=2019&mm=03&dd=27&nav_id=106492

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