Italian Ambassador Luca Gori meets with Serbian parliamentarians

Italian Ambassador to Serbia, Luca Gori, said at a meeting with the Deputy President of the Serbian Assembly, Snežana Paunović, that Italy is not seeking mutual recognition between Belgrade and Pristina, but normalization of relations and that, as a member of the Quinte, Italy insists on the formation of the Community of Serbian Municipalities.

“We are not looking for mutual recognition, but we are looking for the normalization of relations, and it is up to you to determine what the normalization of relations means. We always underline how important dialogue is, as the only instrument of negotiation, and we absolutely condemn and believe that there must not be any unilateral moves that only lead to instability in the region,” said Gori, who had separate meetings with the speaker and deputy speakers of the Serbian Parliament.

As stated in the Assembly’s press release, Gori also said that Italy will take over the command of the KFOR Mission in October this year and that the contingent will be expanded to 1,000 people, as well as that Italy will follow with great interest in the session of the National Assembly, at which the Office for Kosovo and Metohija is due to submit a report.

In a conversation with the Speaker of the Serbian Assembly, Vladimir Orlić, the Italian ambassador pointed out that Italy will continue to support Serbia’s further progress towards EU membership by supporting reforms and engaging in active advocacy of Serbia’s future in the EU in Brussels.

Orlić thanked for the cooperation between the Serbian Assembly’s Commission for the Investigation of the Consequences of 1999 NATO Bombing and the Parliamentary Commission for the Investigation of the Consequences of the Use of Depleted Uranium, formed by the House of Representatives of Italy. He also thanked Italy for making all documentation and research results regarding the consequences of NATO bombing available to the Serbian side.

The ambassador highlighted a great friendship between the two peoples that should be invested in and translated into concrete projects and pointed out that economic cooperation should also be extended to high-tech sectors such as agri-tech, artificial intelligence and energy diversification, as well as environmental protection.

Assembly Deputy Speaker, Elvira Kovač, and the ambassador agreed that dialogue is necessary for normalising relations between Belgrade and Pristina and that unilateral moves are not good.

He also spoke with the Assembly deputy speakers Sandro Božić, Usame Zukorlić, Borko Stefanović and Zoran Lutovec.

At the meeting with the ambassador, Usame Zukorlić pointed out that as the Assembly deputy speaker and a representative of the Bosniak national minority, he would give the maximum contribution to the establishment of even better cooperation between the Italian and Serbian parliaments.

Zukorlić and Gori discussed economic cooperation, and the ambassador stated that the external trade between the two countries is quite good and exceeds 4 billion euros in value, while adding that over 1,000 Italian companies in Serbia employ close to 50,000 people.

The ambassador presented the idea of expanding this cooperation to innovative areas such as green transition, nanotechnology, environmental protection and artificial intelligence.

Zukorlić pointed out that it would be of great importance to create the conditions for Italian investments in the Sandžak region as well.

At the end of the meeting, the two state officials agreed that there is room for improvement of inter-parliamentary cooperation and that their meeting is not the last but only the first geared towards achieving even better cooperation between Serbia and Italy.

At the meeting with another Assembly deputy speaker, Zoran Lutovac, the Italian ambassador pointed out that Italy strongly supports the European integration of Serbia and that the dynamics of EU enlargement should be faster.

Lutovac emphasized that the state should lead a clear pro-European policy and that the EU should support democratic processes in Serbia. He also said that it is important to restore people’s trust in the parliament and restore its role as a key political institution in the country and that the parliament should pass laws that are in the public interest and properly exercise its role as the supervisor of the executive power.

In a separate conversation with another vice president from the opposition, Borko Stefanović, the Italian ambassador pointed out that the goal of his visit to the Serbian Assembly is to get a broader picture of the atmosphere in that institution, considering the pluralism of the new Assembly convocation.

Gori and Stefanović also discussed current issues in Europe, the Western Balkans, the negotiations between Belgrade and Pristina and the European integration process of Serbia, and they agreed that there is room for improving overall cooperation, both parliamentary and economic.

(Danas, Sandžak Press, 31.08.2022)

This post is also available in: Italiano

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