Russian FM: Russia is willing to better its relations with all of the Balkan countries
20. April 2011. | 07:11
The strategic partnership between Russia and Serbia is not pointed against anyone, Russia's Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said ahead of his two-day tour of Serbia, Montenegro, FYRMacedonia and Slovenia.
The partnership declaration is practically finished, he noted.
The work on it started after the October 2009 meeting between Russian President Dmitry Medvedev and his Serbian counterpart Boris Tadic and, according to Lavrov, the document contains the two countries' views on the chief issues in their relations, key problems and development tendencies in the world and the two sides' intention to work together for the benefit of the Russian and Serbian people.
The Balkans is moving towards stabilization and sustainable development after a lengthy period of conflict and economic crisis, Lavrov told . Relations between neighboring countries are improving, but there is still a danger of a return of conflict, he underlined.
The way to a better life in the Balkans lies in establishing new forms of cooperation, which should not cause a new form of divisions - coporate ones, he stated.
Partners shape their cooperation themselves, and Russia is willing to better its relations with all of the Balkan countries, Lavrov noted, adding that his country was interested in seeing the situation in the region return to normal.
Relations between Serbia, Russia on the rise
Foreign Ministers of Serbia and Russian Federation Vuk Jeremic and Sergey Lavrov respectively said today in Belgrade that the relations between the two countries are friendly, close and on the rise, which will be confirmed by the agreement on strategic partnership between Serbia and Russia that will be signed soon.
Jeremic and Lavrov said at a joint press conference at the Serbian Ministry of Foreign Affairs that this agreement will be signed during the forthcoming visit of Serbian President Boris Tadic to Russia.
Jeremic stressed that relations between Serbia and Russia are comprehensive, meaningful, based on mutual friendship and unambiguous support that is not conditioned by anything.
He said that today’s meeting dealt, among other things, with economic cooperation, especially in the field of energy.
The focus was on the Southern Stream project, as well as new projects in the field of pharmacy and infrastructure, which will be discussed in more detail by Serbian Prime Minister Mirko Cvetkovic and Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin at the end of this year, Jeremic explained.
Lavrov said that relations between Serbia and Russia are on the rise and that one of the topics of today's meeting were economic issues that were discussed during last month's visit of Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin to Belgrade.
Jeremic and Lavrov agreed that strengthening of relations between Serbia and Russia cannot harm Serbia’s European integration process.
Jeremic said that within next few days Belgrade will submit to the UN Security Council a proposal on how a credible international investigation in human organ trafficking in Kosovo could look like, and Lavrov pointed out that Russia will fully support Belgrade’s initiative.
The Serbian Foreign Minister expressed his hope that members of the UN Security Council will discuss this proposal of Serbia, adding that this would be a good opportunity to show who backs the establishment of the whole truth about the trade in human organs in Kosovo.
The whole truth can be established only through a serious investigation that has a binding mandate for all, he pointed out and noted that only the UN Security Council can give such a mandate.
He said that a credible international investigation under the UN auspices is necessary because of the territorial jurisdiction of the bodies that will carry out the investigation, but also because all war crimes committed in the territory of the former Yugoslavia have been investigated with the mandate of the UN Security Council.
If that does not happen in this case as well, it will be hard to resist the impression that double standards are used, the Minister warned.
Lavrov underlined that Russia fully supports Belgrade’s struggle to reach justice. An unbiased investigation of allegations from Dick Marty’s report must be carried out and we fully support Serbia on this, Lavrov said.
Less serious crimes have been investigated by international bodies, he recalled and stressed that there must not be double standards on this issue.
Lavrov reiterated that Russia supports Serbia in the case of Kosovo-Metohija, taking the Resolution 1244 as a basis for its position, but also the dialogue between Belgrade and Pristina. The importance of the role of the UN mission in Kosovo must not be downplayed either, he said.
Speaking about culture, the ministers announced that the Days of Serbian culture in Russia will be held in Moscow and that Russia will assist in the painting of Saint Sava Temple.
Jeremic and Lavrov unveiled a memorial plaque dedicated to Russian architect Nikolai Krasnov. The plaque has been placed on the Ministry of Foreign Affair’s building, which was designed by Krasnov and erected in 1929.
Jeremic recalled that Krasnov was one of the tens of thousands of Russians who settled in Serbia early in the 20th century and gave a huge contribution to the Serbian society.
Russia - Serbia to confirm good bilateral relations
Serbian President Boris Tadic had talks with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov about the upcoming official visit to Moscow during which the two countries will sign an agreement on the strategic partnership.
The agreement will confirm good bilateral relations, reads the communiqué of the Serbian President Press Service.
Tadic and Lavrov also discussed realization of plans in the field of economic cooperation of the two countries that Tadic agreed upon in talks with Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin.
Tadic reiterated that Putin’s recent visit to Belgrade represents a huge contribution to development of economic and political relations of the two countries.
Tadic and Lavrov also discussed the situation in the region and Kosovo. Tadic thanked Lavrov for Russia’s strong and unswerving support to preservation of the territorial integrity of Serbia.