Serbia wants EU, but is not ashamed of Russia, China, Vucic tells Czech's Zeman

Serbia wants EU, but is not ashamed of Russia, China, Vucic tells Czech's Zeman

Serbia wants EU, but is not ashamed of Russia, China, Vucic tells Czech's Zeman Izvor: Tanjug/Predsedništvo Srbije

After meeting Milos Zeman, the Czech Republic President, Serbia's head of state Aleksandar Vucic said his country would like to become a European Union member state but it did not regret its relations with Russia and China, the Beta news agency reported.

Vucic added such a stand came out of the fact that Serbia was geographically situated on the crossroad and had to secure itself progress and a better quality of life for its people.

He said that "Zeman is an honest friend of Serbia and its people and I wish him to preserve his brilliant mind for many years to come working in the interest of his nation and not to those of great powers.”

Zeman, who is on a three-day visit to Serbia, said that “every politician has to defend the interest of his country and to be a foreign rulers’ marionette.”

The two discussed Serbia’s obstacles to its road to the EU and the relations with Pristina. Vucic said he believed Serbia would preserve its national and state’s interests despite many obstacles.

Zeman said that “The Hague Tribunal has recently expressed suspicion about war crimes committed by Kosovo’s representatives and I think that was the reason behind the Prime Minister (Ramush Haradinaj) resignation.”

“The state which is led by war criminals should not be a part of the community of democratic countries,” he added.

Ahead of the visit to Serbia, Zeman said that although there was a small chance, Prague could revoke the decision on recognition of Kosovo’s independence.

Zeman, who has been at odds with the EU over his anti-migrant and populist politics, and was dubbed the European (US President Donald) Trump, said: "I appreciate the statement by (Defence Minister) Lubomir Metnar who said the recognition of Kosovo was a diplomatic mistake. I share that opinion, and if more countries withdraw that recognition, the Czech Republic could be among them.”

On Wednesday he thanked “the Serbs for taking our side in 1938 and 1968 when the Russians occupied us. That’s why I’m here today.”

The two also discussed the economic cooperation and the trade exchange and Vucic said it tripled and would be over 1.15 billion Euros in 2019. He added that a company from the Czech Republic invested in Telenor and Telenor Bank, and the other in Serbia’s mineral water producer ‘Knjaz Milos.’

Zeman said no one could force companies to invest, but added that 50 top investors came from the Czech Republic.

During his stay, Zeman will meet Serbia’s Prime Minister Ana Brnabic and will address the Serbia-Czech business forum.                        

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