Serbian president replies to Bosniak minority leader

NEWS 24.07.2018 09:36
Source: Tanjug

Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic reacted to the statement by Bosniak national minority leader Sulejman Ugljanin that he was not that minority’s president, saying he is head of state to all the citizens of Serbia and adding the Ugljanin should not expect a state job.

Ugljanin, who heads the Bosniak National Council, said on Monday that Aleksandar Vucic is not the Bosniak president and Ana Brnabic and the members of her government are not the Bosniak prime minister and ministers. Ugljanin was a cabinet minister in governments headed by Prime Ministers Ivica Dacic and Vucic.

Vucic said he is President to Serbs, Bosniaks, Hungarians and all other citizens of Serbia. “My response to Ugljanin is: there is no armchair (the usual term in Serbia for a ranking state post), no matter what”. The president said he would continue his work in the interest of the Serbia, Bosniak and all other nations living in Serbia.  

The statement also drew condemnation from a rival Bosniak political leader and the country’s defence minister.

Commenting the statement, Defence Minister Aleksandar Vulin said that Ugljanin was “causing anxiety” and “invoking evil” which neither Bosniaks nor Serbs want. “Ugljanin will not stop causing conflicts until he becomes a subject of scrutiny for the judiciary,” Vulin told Belgrade daily newspaper Vecernje Novosti on Tuesday.  

Muamer Zukorlic, a former Imam in the town of Novi Pazar who now heads the Justice and Reconciliation Party, said that Ugljanin is trying to “profit from a radicalization of the situation in a narrow-minded way”. He added that Ugljanin said something completely different when he was a minister “praising Serbia as a country of well-being for Bosniaks, renouncing autonomy and very rarely mentioning the Sandzak region”.  

Zukorlic recalled the Ugljanin’s party openly supported Vucic at the presidential elections.