Ministry of Foreign Affairs Ministry Minister Interviews
Saturday, 28 February 2015. PDF Print E-mail
Minister Dacic’s Interview for “Vecernje novosti”
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Dacic vecernje_novosti_282015Serbia will not budge an inch from its position on foreign policy. There is no such a thing as cooling off of relations with the Russian Federation, as they will be better and better, while the path towards the European Union remains our strategic commitment.

This is what Serbian Foreign Minister Ivica Dacic stated for "Novosti", claiming that the increasingly frequent headlines in certain media, saying that Belgrade was turning back to Moscow, were just arbitrary interpretations.

How did you interpret John Kerry's message that "Serbia (was) in the firing line between America and Russia"? Did you ask Mr. Kerry what he meant by that?

We also touched on that point. I think that the statement made by the US Secretary of State was overemphasized in the Serbian public, for the State Secretary made general comments, analyzing the situation in our region in the context of the Ukraine conflict.

Did he tell you precisely that Washington wanted to snatch Serbia away from the Russian influence?

No, he didn't. However, I openly told him that Serbia was not in the same position as some other countries, i.e. that we would certainly not choose between the European Union and the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO). Mr. Kerry, too, like everyone else in the US administration, is sensitive to our position, and the delicate role assigned to us, as the country holding the OSCE Chairmanship-in-Office.

Still, can one expect behind-the-scenes pressures to align with the sanctions against Moscow?

Our position is crystal clear. We are not doubtful about whether European integration is our strategic direction, and this implies renewal of friendships with Western states, but also solidification of ties with China and Latin American countries. Of course, our ties with Russia and the Russian people are unbreakable.

Therefore, there is no U-turn in Serbia's foreign policy course?

No U-turn was made, and no U-turn will be made. Serbia's diplomacy has been affirmed and it is evident that the others are now perceiving us differently. I could see that for myself in the United Nations Security Council, too, where virtually all the Ambassadors, from the US, to the Russian, to the Chinese Ambassador, appreciated our balanced approach when it comes to the Ukrainian crisis. Moreover, Serbia has been recognized as a promoter of political stability in our region.

You invited Mr. Kerry to visit Belgrade. Are there any hints that he would accept your invitation?

I sincerely hope that we will have the honour to welcome Mr. Kerry at the OSCE Ministerial Council, to take place in December. That would be a great honour for Serbia. Especially so, because, as I recall, Gerald Ford was the last US President that made an official visit to