Vucic in New York: Safeguarding national stability and the Balkans

Serbian Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic said in New York, on Sept. 21, that the most important thing for Serbia was to maintain its internal stability, as this is according to him the pre-condition for further economic growth.

“I think it’s important that we maintain stability and peace, that we keep the peace in our country too, because everything happening around us affects Serbia, too. If we can keep it we won’t have a problem with the economy,” Vucic told the Serbian Broadcasting Corporation, adding that Serbia would increase its growth percentage, but that the only thing worrying him was stability in the region.

At a conference on Srebrenica held by the Clinton Foundation on Sept. 20, he succeeded in winning over a good part of the U.S. audience with his gravitas and responsibility, despite the difficult atmosphere, he said.

Noting that Serbia respected other victims, he said he wished others respected Serbian victims too, and said that Serbs and Bosniaks should live side by side. According to him, the relationship of Serbs and Bosniaks is of vital importance for the future.

During the day, Vucic met with Montenegrin Prime Minister Milo Djukanovic in New York. The two officials described the relations between their countries as stable, but added that economic cooperation needed improvement.

Vucic and Djukanovic agreed that peace and the full stability of the West Balkans were a key condition for economic, social and every other kind of progress, the Serbian government’s media office announced.

The Serbian PM also said that peace is the fundamental priority for Serbia, and the Serb Republic (RS) will not disappear.

This statement comes in response to Sefer Halilovic, a wartime commander of the Muslim forces in Bosnia, who said the Serb entity (the Republic of Srpska) in Bosnia “would disappear” if it holds a referendum on the Day of the Republic of Srpska (RS).

“Such statements, whoever they come from, are certainly not good. Serbia will do its utmost not to see peace disrupted and any statement in that direction, from any side, is bad and unnecessary. We need peace at any price and we will keep it. We respect the integrity of Bosnia-Herzegovina, but the RS will not disappear either, and this is in line with the Dayton Accords,” the Serbian prime minister said.

(Beta, B92, 21.09.2016)

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