Russian President Vladimir Putin is preparing a special package for Serbia with at least 20 strategic agreements, which will be presented in mid-January in Belgrade, during his meeting with his Serbian counterpart, Aleksandar Vucic – Vecernje Novosti finds out from informal sources.
This $200mln worth of agreements cover substantial Russian investments in the Serbian infrastructure, energy sector, agriculture, defence systems, education and tourism. The most important segments are contracts on the construction of railway corridors, Serbia’s link to the Turkish Stream gas pipeline, the delivery of T-72 and anti-aircraft missiles, and the export of Serbian food to the Russian Federation.
Furthermore, Putin’s official visit to Serbia has enormous significance for the country in the light of the diplomatic struggle for Kosovo and Metohija, where the Kremlin’s support is valuable. The two statesmen agree that without the involvement of Moscow, it is impossible to reach a sustainable, compromise solution, so Putin’s visit is a sort of encouragement before the decisive round of talks about Kosovo. In this regard, Russia’s position is very important since it said that it would support any agreement between Serbs and Albanians.
Following the meeting of President Aleksandar Vucic and the Russian Ambassador Alexander Chepurin, Vucic said: „I believe that the forthcoming visit of Vladimir Putin will be so far, the most fruitful in terms of the number and content of the agreements which we will jointly sign. We are approaching these talks with a great care and impatience, and I am confident that this will be another „strong link in the chain“ of our very good relations that are close, honest and friendly“.
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Vucic thanked Russia and its president for their support to the territorial integrity of Serbia and efforts to find a compromise solution for Kosovo, rather than the one that would be the result of pressure, blackmail and unilateral decisions.
The Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov confirmed on Wednesday that Putin and Thaci spoke briefly in Paris on the margins of the ceremony marking the 100th anniversary of the end of the First World War and that the Russian President confirmed Moscow’s willingness to support Belgrade and Pristina’s agreement, and added
„Putin stressed the need for Kosovo to reach a consensus with Serbia. He said that we are ready to support the agreement, which both sides would guarantee.“
Ambassador Chepurin once again explained the position of Moscow and said that there was absolute readiness for cooperation and assistance in resolving the Kosovo issue and that UN Resolution 1244 was a legal framework that should be respected when seeking a compromise.
„The main problem is that Brussels talks have been underway for six years and that while Serbia has fulfilled all the agreements reached so far, the same cannot be said for the other party, especially when it comes to the establishment of the Community of Serb Municipalities“, Chepurin added.
(Vecernje Novosti, 15.11.2018)
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