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International Information Centre for Balkan Studies



"Pristina cannot block Serbia's EU path"

Minister for European Integration Jadranka Joksimovic says she sees no reason for the process of Serbia's EU integration to slow down due to Pristina's moves.

MARCH 20, 2019

Joksimovic told the daily Vecernje Novosti that the only way for the European Union to preserve the integral inviolability and indivisibility of the negotiation process with Serbia is to "evacuate the monitoring of the Brussels agreement from the negotiating platform for Chapter 35."

She pointed out that Chapter 35 should serve to monitor the agreements reached with Pristina, although it has been proven multiple times that Serbia respects them. 

"Arrangements either exist or don't, they are not commodities to be bargained with," she said. Speaking about a series of moves Pristina has made, that have blocked the dialogue with Belgrade, the minister said that Pristina finally stopped the dialogue by introducing taxes (on goods from central Serbia), and by adopting the (negotiating) platform, announced that the Brussels agreement does not exist for them. 

"It is therefore no longer feasible that Belgrade alone is trying to maintain it through committed resolve for cooperation, while the EU and other international actors are failing to pull out the dialogue car that got stuck in Pristina's mud of confrontation," said Joksimovic. 

She pointed out that the EU, as a signatory to the Brussels agreement, can make a basic overview of what has been achieved, "and it will show that Belgrade has no unfulfilled obligations." 

"In line with the rules of negotiations, which include Pristina not blocking Serbia on its European path, I do not see any valid justification for the possible slowing down of Serbia's process due to Pristina's unilateral moves, which also make EU's entire work on the dialogue meaningless," Joksimovic said. 

Asked about the prospects of membership in 2025, Joksimovic replied that, regardless of the required technical work that must be done in the negotiations, EU accession is primarily a political process that depends largely on attitudes, but also on perceptions of member-states. 

"We don't see the EU as a promise, but as an open option and we will continue to implement reforms," Joksimovic said. 

The minister added that Serbia expects the next intergovernmental conference and the opening of new chapters by the end of June, after EU elections and the publication of the annual report on Serbia's progress. She recalled that five chapters are technically ready to be opened, and that it was realistic that some of them wll be opened.

 Source: https://www.b92.net/eng/news/politics.php?yyyy=2019&mm=03&dd=20&nav_id=106450

"Serb people, and I with it, have already won"

After the verdict passed against him, Radovan Karadzic sent a message, recounted for RTRS from The Hague by one of his defense team members, Marko Sladojevic.

 

 MARCH 21, 2019

"The Serb people and myself together with it, have already won. The Serb Republic (RS) has been created, and the Serb people are free in their own state," Karadzic is quoted as saying, and adding:

"The sacrifice that I am making is lesser than that of others. Thousands of thousands of young people built the RS with their lives. Many became disabled veterans. The biggest sacrifices were those of mothers whose sons, most often their only sons, gave their lives for the freedom of the Serb people. Those are the genuine victims." 

According to the lawyer, who said he spoke with Karadzic for about half an hour after the verdict was delivered, he also said that the Hague Tribunal's revenge against him was empty, and that as an old man, he could not be harmed by it. 

"We did not give up even when it was much harder, so even imprisoned like this I will never stop fighting for the truth about our just struggle in the war that was imposed on us, and in which all three peoples suffered. Every war, especially a civil war, results in crimes, which our state, if aware of them, condemned and prosecuted. We fought honorably for the freedom and equality of the Serb people in Bosnia-Herzegovina. Therefore, let us always and in every place be dignified, let us not hate others, and let us proudly guard what is greater than us - the Serb Republic," Karadzic stated. 

Earlier in the day on Wednesday, the Appeals Chamber of the Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals in The Hague sentenced Karadzic to life imprisonment on charges of genocide and war crimes, overturning an earlier judgment sentencing him to 40 years in prison. 

Karadzic was the first president of the RS and a political leader of Serbs in Bosnia-Herzegovina during the 1992-95 war.

 

Source: https://www.b92.net/eng/news/region.php?yyyy=2019&mm=03&dd=21&nav_id=106454

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On March 24, 2016, Karadzic was sentenced to 40 years in prison in the first instance ruling, but the decision was appealed both by the prosecution and by the defense. He was at the time found guilty on 10 out of 11 counts of the indictment. 

Fila specified that Karadzic had been indicted on one count of genocide, five counts of crime against humanity, four counts related to violations of the rules and customs of war and three concerning joint criminal enterprise. He also stood accused of responsibility for the shelling of Sarajevo, expulsion of the population from Srebrenica, and taking of hostages. 

Fila remarked that Karadzic was found guilty on all but one crucial count - genocide in the municipalities of Bratunac, Brcko, Foca, Kljuc, Kotor, Varos, Prijedor, Sanski Most, Visegrad, Vlasenica and Zvornik. 

"The only good thing is that (judge) Theodore Meron is not there. The prosecutor's wish was to show that genocide took place not only in Srebrenica. If this issue remains and if the prosecutor succeeds in us being a genocidal people for the entire Bosnia-Herzegovina, the punishment will life in prison," the lawyer stressed.

 Source: https://www.b92.net/eng/news/region.php?yyyy=2019&mm=03&dd=20&nav_id=106447

Appeals Chamber sentences Karadzic to life imprisonment

The Appeals Chamber of the Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals in The Hague has sentenced Radovan Karadzic to life imprisonment.

 MARCH 20, 2019

The appeals verdict rendered on Wednesday changes the first-instance verdict, that in Match 2016 sentenced the first president of the Serb Republic (RS) to 40 years in prison.

Although the Appeals Chamber rejected most of the arguments made by the prosecution and the defense, the judges, led by Denmark's Vagn Prusse Joensen, found that the 40-year sentence was not adequate. 

Karadzic was today once again convicted on 10 out of the indictment's 11 counts. 

The Appeals Chamber confirmed that Karadzic was not guilty of genocide against the Muslim (Bosniak) population in seven municipalities of Bosnia-Herzegovina in the period between 1992 and 1995.

"Not optimistic"

Ahead of the final verdict in the trial of former Serb Republic (RS) president Radovan Karadzic, lawyer Toma Fila said that he was "not optimistic." 

"By nature, I'm not an optimist. There is a possibility that his sentence will be increased," Fila told TV Prva on Wednesday, speaking about the verdict that was to be delivered later in the day by Appeals Chamber of the Residual Mechanism in The Hague. 

On March 24, 2016, Karadzic was sentenced to 40 years in prison in the first instance ruling, but the decision was appealed both by the prosecution and by the defense. He was at the time found guilty on 10 out of 11 counts of the indictment. 

Fila specified that Karadzic had been indicted on one count of genocide, five counts of crime against humanity, four counts related to violations of the rules and customs of war and three concerning joint criminal enterprise. He also stood accused of responsibility for the shelling of Sarajevo, expulsion of the population from Srebrenica, and taking of hostages. 

Fila remarked that Karadzic was found guilty on all but one crucial count - genocide in the municipalities of Bratunac, Brcko, Foca, Kljuc, Kotor, Varos, Prijedor, Sanski Most, Visegrad, Vlasenica and Zvornik. 

"The only good thing is that (judge) Theodore Meron is not there. The prosecutor's wish was to show that genocide took place not only in Srebrenica. If this issue remains and if the prosecutor succeeds in us being a genocidal people for the entire Bosnia-Herzegovina, the punishment will life in prison," the lawyer stressed.

 Source: https://www.b92.net/eng/news/region.php?yyyy=2019&mm=03&dd=20&nav_id=106447

"EU membership remains Serbia's foreign policy priority"

First Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Ivica Dacic spoke with on Monday with representatives of the European Council on Foreign Affairs (ECFR).

MARCH 19, 2019

According to the Serbian government, they discussed "the current state of affairs in relations between Serbia and the European Union in the process of our country's Eurointegration and the future of the dialogue Belgrade and Pristina."

They also spoke about the implementation of political and economic reforms on the road to the EU, with particular emphasis on regional cooperation. 

Dacic reiterated that full EU membership represents Serbia's foreign policy priority, and that our country is committed to resolving all open issues through dialogue and peaceful means. 

The minister pointed to the need to find sustainable solutions in the dialogue between Belgrade and Pristina, with the adequate support of the international community.

 

Source: https://www.b92.net/eng/news/politics.php?yyyy=2019&mm=03&dd=19&nav_id=106433

Serbia is always looked at with much love from RS - Dodik

President Aleksandar Vucic met in Belgrade on Tuesday with Bosnia-Herzegovina (BiH) Presidency Chairman Milorad Dodik.

MARCH 19, 2019

Dodik, a former president of the Serb entity in BiH, the Serb Republic (RS), expressed "gratitude and satisfaction with the desire, determination and intention of Serbia and President Aleksandar Vucic to continuously assist citizens and municipalities of the RS."

In a joint conference with Vucic, Dodik said that today's agreement on assistance to RS citizens - the projects to be financed by Serbia in 62 municipalities in the RS - have been "the most concrete to date." 

The realization of this agreement and project will mean that Serbia will be present in all municipalities throughout the RS, and it's about serious money, Dodik said. 

He added that the fact Serbia was in this way helping the RS was encouraging, "when we know there is much that Serbia needs to be done." 

Dodik said that he also talked with Vucic about the issue of relations between BiH and Serbia, especially the issue of the border, which, as he said, remains unresolved due to the attitude of the Bosniak (Bosnian Muslim) side that has "its own, different approach to the issue." 

As far as he is concerned, he said, the option that was originally proposed is acceptable. 

"Serbia and Srpska (RS) are showing cooperation that is aimed at stabilizing the entire area. To us Serbia is the most important for stability of the entire region, and for the open issues that exist to be solved," Dodik said, adding that "what Serbia is doing for the RS is a good example for everyone, especially for erbs in BiH." 

According to Dodik, President Vucic informed about the formation of power at the state level of BiH, where the Serb and Croat sides showed readiness, but there had been obvious obstruction from the Bosniak side in order to retain the personnel that suits them in ministerial positions. 

Therefore, he pointed out, it is not only a technical delay, but an organized obstruction, which will last for a while, Dodik said, adding that the Serb side does not intend "to suffer it." 

The behavior of Vucic during the weekend protests (in Belgrade) and the message sent that way - the message of the defense of institutions and statehood - has met with the approval of citizens in the RS, while nobody approves of violence, Dodik said. 

Asked how the events in Belgrade were seen in BiH, he replied: 

"Never mind how it's seen in BiH. In the RS it's seen this way - Serbia is always looked at from the RS with a great deal of love, and a desire that all the best things happen to it. What we saw was certainly not a good picture and it was aimed at destabilizing Serbia and at collapsing the negotiating, regional and international position of Serbia."

 

Source:https://www.b92.net/eng/news/politics.php?yyyy=2019&mm=03&dd=19&nav_id=106441

It is important that a genocide judgment remains, even if only for Srebrenica

Kamberovic states that the Court will once again send a message that the crime is not worth the money, and that Karadzic can not be an idol

March 19, 2019

President of the Association for Modern History and Professor at the Department of History at the Faculty of Philosophy in Sarajevo, Husnija Kamberovic, told FENA that it is difficult to predict with certainty the decision of the International Criminal Court mechanism, but thinks that sufficient evidence has been produced during the trial The International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY), in 2016, sentenced Radovan Karadzic to 40 years in prison for each of the crimes he was charged with, including the crime of genocide.

- We know that there has been a change in the Trial Chamber, which in itself is already precedent, and there is a lot of speculation about the protests on the Court, which can all cause a certain fear when it comes to the final decision. Nevertheless, I believe that the Trial Chamber will confirm the previously pronounced verdict and that there will be no significant changes. The Defense will, of course, be dissatisfied with such a verdict as the Prosecutor's Office, which demanded that crimes committed in Bratunac, Foca, Kljuc, Sanski Most, Vlasenica and Zvornik be characterized as crimes of genocide - said Kamberovic.

He added, he thinks that it is important to remain a verdict on genocide, even if only for Srebrenica, and that 40 years in prison, when Karadzic is at issue, is the same as a life sentence.

Kamberovic states that the Court will once again send a message that the crime is not worth the money, and that Karadzic can not be an idol for anyone.

- I think that after the confirmation of the Karadzic and Mladic judgments, we can underline the process of litigation, face genuine crimes, and then continue to build life and relations not only in Bosnia and Herzegovina, but also relations between B&H and Serbia - concluded Kamberovic .

The Appeals Chamber of the International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Courts will pronounce the second instance verdict Radovan Karadzic as announced on March 20 in The Hague.

Karadzic was found guilty of 10 counts of the indictment, including genocide in Srebrenica, by the Trial Chamber's Trial Chamber of 2016, and sentenced to a single 40-year prison sentence.

He was acquitted of the first count of the charge that charged him with genocide in seven municipalities - Bratunac, Kljuc, Foca, Prijedor, Sanski Most, Vlasenica and Zvornik.

Source:  https://www.oslobodjenje.ba/vijesti/bih/kamberovic-vazno-je-da-ostane-presuda-za-genocid-pa-makar-i-samo-za-srebrenicu-442369

Agreed principles on the establishment of power at the level of B&H

Leaders of the SNSD, HDZ BiH and the SDA - Milorad Dodik, Dragan Covic and Bakir Izetbegovic agreed on Momday evening in Sarajevo the text of the statement on the principles for forming authorities at the level of BiH.

March 18, 2019

The text contains 11 points, from the adoption of the law to European integration, and at the meeting there was no discussion on the distribution of ministries, the RTRS said.

SNSD President Milorad Dodik said that he agreed that each of the three constituent peoples should belong to three ministries in the new Council of Ministers' convening, and that the Council of Ministers would not be formed by the end of March.

"It would be a good thing that the Council of Ministers be formed by the end of March and the arrival of the EU Commissioner for Neighborhood Policy and the negotiations on the extension of Johannes Hahn, but it is impossible because they do not allow this procedure," Dodik told reporters after a meeting with Čović and Izetbegović.

Dodik, who is also chairman of the BiH Presidency, emphasized that the Presidency session will be convened when a complete agreement on the establishment of power at the level of B&H is reached.

According to him, the statement, which contains 11 points, says everything that needs to be done in accordance with the Constitution and laws.

Speaking about the NATO Membership Action Plan, he stressed that until 2013 nothing was respected, and that this had suddenly become a life issue.

- We respect the position of the National Assembly of the Republic of Srpska, who said that the trip to NATO is not in the interest of  Republika Srpska and we will behave like that. If someone expects that we will change that attitude in order to enter the Council of Ministers, then “thank”  them for the Council of Ministers, "Dodik said.

HDZ B&H President Dragan Covic said that in a harmonized statement on the principles for forming the authorities at the level of BiH, what should, in principle, be done in accordance with the Constitution and laws, was quoted by Tanjug.

- We have a harmonized statement on these principles on which the authorities at the level of B&H should function. Now we should try to seek a second step - said Covic after meeting in the building of the B&H Presidency in Sarajevo.

Source: https://vesti-online.com/Vesti/Ex-YU/730694/Usaglaseni-principi-o-formiranju-vlasti-na-nivou-BiH

Dodik announces a turning point in Sarajevo

The leader of the Alliance of Independent Social Democrats (SNSD) and BiH Presidency Chairman Milorad Dodik confirmed that today a meeting will be held in Sarajevo regarding the establishment of the Council of Ministers of BiH.

March, 19, 2019

Fena reports that Dodik believes this will be completed by the end of March and until the visit of the Neighborhood Policy Commissioner and EU Enlargement Commissioner Johannes Hahn to Sarajevo.

- Today we have a meeting in Sarajevo and I think that we have a final statement on the principles regarding the formation of power - Dodik said, adding that no coalition is being made at the level of BiH, either political or programmatic.

He said also that, after confirming this statement, it will be discussed about the division of ministries in the Council of Ministers.

- We are gathered in accordance with the Constitution and laws, so I believe that we will be able to finalize this today. As far as we are concerned, the current text of this statement is acceptable and we expect other partners to agree on that. It is possible that in the next two or three days we will hold a session of the BiH Presidency and propose the chairman of the Council of Ministers - Dodik said.

He told reporters in Banja Luka that the European Union is expressing the expectations that the establishment of the Council of Ministers should be completed as soon as possible, and that members of the BiH Presidency during their visit to Brussels pointed out that this would be completed in March.

Source: https://vesti-online.com/Vesti/Ex-YU/730639/Dodik-najavljuje-preokret-u-Sarajevu

of the Council of Ministers of BiH.

 

Haradinaj: Albanians do not have a land for giving

Kosovo Prime Minister Ramush Haradinaj continues to oppose any agreement that would change the borders of Kosovo.

March, 18, 2019

He stressed that the current territorial integrity should be protected, Pristina media reported.

Haradinaj said that on Sunday (March, 17), marking the anniversary of the killing of members of the former Kosovo Liberation Army in the village of Korisa near Prizren.

- We are on the right side in Kosovo, but we are in the moment when we have to take care of our country. It is known that during the centuries the Albanians gave the land God gave them. When I say the country of Albanians, I mean all ethnic communities living in their homes. There is no return, however, and the practice of taking away Albanians no longer exists, "Haradinaj said.

According to him, the "generation of the KLA" has changed everything, and he says that the course of history has changed. Haradinaj added that Kosovo is a product of compromise since February 17, 2008, and whoever tries to change it will trigger the rights of Albanians in the Balkans.

- We agreed to fulfill our right, Kosovo since February 17th, convinced that we will once again prove that we want peace and stability in the Balkans - said Haradinaj.

Source: https://vesti-online.com/Vesti/Srbija/730611/Haradinaj-Albanci-nemaju-zemlju-za-davanje

Research: Is it time to reconcile with NATO?

Just under half of the citizens in Serbia, 46 percent of them, believe that even after 20 years since the bombing, there has not yet been a time for reconciliation with NATO, a survey of public opinion has been conducted for the Institute for European Affairs.

March, 19, 2019

Only a third of citizens would accept an apology for the NATO bombing, while the remaining two-thirds would not, the director of the Institute Naim Behiri said in the opening of the debate "20 years since NATO intervention, is it time for reconciliation".

 

The debate was attended by representative of the National Assembly  Dragan Sormaz, former Defense Minister Dragan Sutanovac, sociologist Vesna Pesic and president of the Democratic Party of Serbia Milos Jovanovic.

Cooperation between Serbia and the Alliance for the citizens of Serbia deserves a slightly higher rating than the two, said Beširi, adding that the assessment was not influenced by the fact that the majority of the 52 million Euros of donations to the Serbian Ministry of  Defense came from the NATO member countries.

The survey, whose results the Institute received yesterday (March, 18), shows that 31 percent of citizens support cooperation.

Membership is supported by only 10 per cent of citizens, while 79 per cent oppose this idea, Bashiri said, adding that the survey showed that 45 per cent of citizens believe that during those 78 days, "which were almost the darkest days in recent history," they were killed between 2,000 and 5,000 people.

Human Rights Watch documents, according to the director of the Institute, say that at that time between 488 and 527 civilians were killed, 201in  Serbia and in Kosovo and Metohia 278 and 317, and in Montenegro eight.

According to the Humanitarian Law Center, 754 people were killed, as follows:

- 454 civilians and 300 members of the armed forces were killed. Among the civilians, there were 207 people of Serbian and Montenegrin nationality, 219 Albanians, 14 Roma and 14 other nationalities - Bashiri reported the HLC data.

According to these data, 274 members of the army and police forces were killed and 26 from the Kosovo Liberation  Army.

In the debate, moderated by journalist Olja Bećković, the president of the Democratic Party of Serbia Milos Jovanović said that reconciliation is not possible, because NATO is part of those forces that participate in the secession of Serbia.

"It's impossible to swallow a pill of reconciliation," Jovanovic said, causing the applause of those present, as well as commenting on former Democratic Party President Sutanovac that it is now clear who called the guests in the debate.

Jovanovic, among other things, assessed that the war could have been avoided and that in Rambouillet, which preceded the bombing, there were some unacceptable points for Serbia.

Sutanovac reminded that NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg apologized to the citizens of Serbia, which made the audience laugh.

Sutanovac also reminded of the difficult moments in the country during the bombing, such as charging with the imprisoned and murdering journalist Slavko Curuvija, as well as promises from Russia that a powerful weapon would come to Serbia.

He also said that Serbian citizens like to live in legends and not respect other people's victims.

Sociologist and politician Vesna Pesic said that Serbia's reactions to marking the anniversary of the NATO aggression, as they pass, "all the crazies and fools", that they go from a once acceptable commemoration to today's idea of a military parade in Nis, or a recent assessment by the Minister of Defense, Alexander Vulin that it was terrorism.

Pešić recalled that Serbia is a member of the Partnership for Peace since 2006 and that it then reconciled with NATO, with which it has reached the maximum cooperation, and that the only possible step forward in this field is membership.

Sormaz, who is the head of the Serbian Parliament's delegation to the NATO Parliamentary Assembly, said that it would be best for Serbia to rebuild relations with the US that it had 100 years ago and to become Washington's "loyal, credible and predictable partner" again.

Source: https://vesti-online.com/Vesti/Srbija/730698/Istrazivanje-Da-li-je-vreme-za-pomirenje-sa-NATO

 

"Protesters obviously have some kind of support from West"

Violent demonstrations of a part of the opposition in the past two days sent an ugly picture from Belgrade, causing great damage to Serbia, Ivica Dacic says.

March 18, 2019

The head of Serbian diplomacy finds it incomprehensible that no embassies here, and the EU, made a statement about these events. (Later in the day on Monday an EU spokesperson did react to the incident at public broadcaster RTS on Saturday and at the protest in front of the Presidency on Sunday).

Dacic also said that said that all this happened on the day when a different message should have been sent to the world, one about the 15th anniversary of the March pogrom of Serbs in Kosovo and Metohija.

Instead, he said, a message went out that allegedly in Serbia there is instability, crisis, conflict, incidents...

"This caused great damage to Serbia," Dacic said.

He added that he asked the president of Serbia and employees of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs whether any of the Western ambassadors were interested in what was happening in connection with the protest.

The answer was that none of them contacted to the Presidency or to the Ministry - when the Presidency was "to all intents and purposes blocke," when threats were made against the president and when the demonstrators stormed the state television, he said.

"Nobody has even made a phone call to either the Ministry or the Presidency, to at least ask what was happening," Dacic said.

The first deputy prime minister is convinced that, when analyzing who burst into the RTS building and who was in front of the Presidency, there would be "interesting conclusions."

It is obvious, he pointed out, that these people have some kind of support from the West.

Condemning the demonstrations that took place over the weekend once again, Dacic stressed it was important to understand "the depth of these problems".

As a witness to numerous demonstrations in the past, the minister described the latest last weekend in Belgrade as insignificant.

The intention of the demonstrators was to change the authorities, but this goal, as he said, has not been achieved.

 

Source: https://www.b92.net/eng/news/politics.php?yyyy=2019&mm=03&dd=18&nav_id=106427

 

NATO committed grave crime against small country - Vucic

NATO aggression was a grave crime against a small sovereign country, but 20 years on, the Serb people remain unbowed, says Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic.

March 18, 2019

He stated this at the opening of the 4th Belgrade Strategic Dialogue.

"Serbia and the Serb people are still unbowed today, but today we are in the process of a comprehensive process of state consolidation and I am convinced of a safe and successful future," Vucic emphasized.

As a small and independent country, Serbia has been under attack by many, because no one likes disobedience, and Serbia makes its own decisions, the president said.

Vucic reiterated that Serbia does not want to join NATO, does not have two different stories, "and we say the same to everyone and before everyone."

According to him, Serbia will remain on that road no matter how many attempts there are to derail it.

He pointed out that UN Security Council Resolution 1244 is not respected today and that it does not apply in the field.

Vucic said this was the case because some countries recognized Kosovo - and said that if it no longer applies - "they should try to cancel it in the UN."

He thanked Russia for supporting the Serb people 20 years ago, as it does now, and pointed out that the Serbs are loyal to everyone who helped us in difficult times.

Vucic pointed out that we should not be ashamed of condemning the NATO aggression as others had in Serbia had been, who only worried about their jobs.

For me, the truth is the priority, added Vucic.

The 4th International Conference the Belgrade Strategic Dialogue, titled "20 years since the bombing of Yugoslavia - lessons for European security in the 21st century" is being held in Belgrade on Monday.

 

Source: https://www.b92.net/eng/news/politics.php?yyyy=2019&mm=03&dd=18&nav_id=106429

Russia adopts document on NATO's 1999 attack against Serbia

Russia has adopted a document on the 20th anniversary of the start of the NATO bombing of the the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (Serbia and Montenegro).

 

WEDNESDAY, MARCH 13, 2019

Tanjug is reporting on Wednesday, citing Sputnik, that the text states that "the initiators of this crime must be held responsible."

According to the document adopted by the Federation Council (Upper House) of the Russian Parliament, NATO's military operation reflected negatively on further development of mutual relations and confidence of European states, while the impunity of those responsible has led to new tragedies: in Syria, Iraq, and Libya. 

Unfortunately, the lessons have not been learned, and NATO continued to use military force against other sovereign states - Iraq, Libya and Syria, today threatening Venezuela, Cuba and Nicaragua with the same. 

Russian senators recall that NATO used ammunition filled with depleted uranium in the bombing of Yugoslavia, which caused numerous casualties among civilians. 

In addition, the recognition of Kosovo's independence, which followed in 2008 by a series of western countries, "represented only a continuation of what NATO had begun - support of separatism and conflict in the territory of the former Yugoslavia." 

The Federation Council also claims that the de facto secession of Kosovo and Metohija is a precedent in international relations, which has made it extremely complicated to resolve existing conflicts in cases involving unrecognized states, especially given the fact that the West is acting in a completely opposite manner when it comes to Moldova, Georgia, and Ukraine. 

It is also added that the NATO military operation was an act of aggression against a sovereign state and that therefore the initiators of this crime should be held accountable. 

In this regard, the Council called on parliaments of countries all over the world, as well as international organizations such as the UN, the Commonwealth of Independent States, the Collective Security Treaty Organization, the OSCE and the European Parliament to condemn NATO's aggression and take all steps to remedy the consequences.

 

Source: https://www.b92.net/eng/news/world.php?yyyy=2019&mm=03&dd=13&nav_id=106403

Serbia to hold military parade on anniversary of NATO attack

Aleksandar Vucic says the 20th anniversary of the start of NATO's bombing will be marked with a special religious prayer, moleban, and a military parade.

 

TUESDAY, MARCH 12,

"It's been 20 years since NATO's aggression on one sovereign country, which was not guided only by bombs from the air, it was done almost by any means - political, media," the president told RTS on Tuesday.

He pointed out that it was not only a matter "bombing" - because that was just a technical term. Instead what happened was an aggression on a sovereign country, which did not deserve it any way, but suffered terrible sacrifices. 

"Serbia, despite the fact that it was not conducting the smartest and the wisest of policies, did nothing to deserve that and is not responsible for NATO's aggression," while the terrible suffering the country faced - "from (killed toddlers) Milica and Sara, to many soldiers and policemen who died only for protecting the law." 

"We will (on March 24), in a dignified manner, in the evening ,be in Nis, which was attacked several times, exactly on the anniversary, to address the citizens. It will be a state manifestation, with a moleban that will be led by Patriarch Irinej and the bishops of the Serbian Church," he stressed. 

He added that before that, a military parade will be organized in Nis, where citizens will be able to see 1,500 special purpose soldiers, equipped according to the latest standards, eight to ten MiG-29s, and 19 new helicopters. 

"Serbia is seriously strengthening, its security, its safety. That is the foundation of further consolidation of our state," Vucic said, adding that the program of building new housing for members of the military, the police, and the BIA will continue, as well as work on increasing their wages. 

The president called on the residents of Nis, and those living in the south and south-east of Serbia, to "come and see their army" on the day.

 

Source: https://www.b92.net/eng/news/politics.php?yyyy=2019&mm=03&dd=12&nav_id=106397

Covic: By the end of the week it is possible to harmonize the statement on the formation of state power

 

Thursday, March 14, 2019

HDZ BiH President Dragan Čović said that he had exchanged with the presidents of the SDA and the SNSD proposals for a statement on forming state power, and that in the next few days, three parties would appoint one representative to agree on the common content of the statement.

- It is realistic to expect a joint statement to be agreed by the end of this week. If this happens, we will have a precondition to sit down and agree on the concept of the Council of Ministers through the departments and to go to the appointment of a mandate holder - said Covic in an interview with BH. edition of "Vecernji list".

He stressed that the HNS parties in state-level negotiations will insist on the ministries of finance and foreign affairs, and that they could also be the head of justice.

- We are flexible here, and these first two ministries are something else. Because of our weak position, primarily in the Presidency of BiH and the will of the Bosniak people to choose two members of the Presidency, we must keep the position of the Minister of Foreign Affairs, which enables us, how much, to participate in BiH's foreign policy. In addition, there are three or four deputy positions in the ministries, but this is now a matter of agreement with partners. Initially, all the parties make similar requests, and then we try to align it with some rules, but I believe that this will not be an obstacle to the establishment of power if we agree on other things that we are currently defining in this short statement - said Covic.

When it comes to executive power in the Federation, Covic says HNS is still looking for a partner with whom he can make a software platform.

- At the level of the Federation, we have to have a partner with whom we can make a reform agenda that will ultimately lead to the European Union, which will contain all elements of our integration activities at the entity level, as well as social and economic stability. For us, the first point is electoral legislation, and when we find that partner, we will surely go quickly to establish power at the federal level - explained Covic.

Speaking about the possibilities of constitutional reform before today's meeting in Neum, the "European Constitution for BiH", Covic said that a structure should be created in BiH that will within itself take into account what we have in similar countries, such as Switzerland, Belgium or some other multinational country within European Union.

 I am convinced that on this track, by strengthening the confidence, one can make a step towards finding common solutions that will meet the needs of all three peoples. I, as a representative of the Croatian people, can say what are the minima that must be met when the Croats are in question, but also the minimum interests of other nations should be taken into account - said Covic, adding that it is not realistic to expect a more active role of the international community in That process. 

Source: https://avaz.ba/vijesti/bih/466213/covic-do-kraja-sedmice-moguce-usaglasavanje-izjave-o-formiranju-drzavne-vlasti

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