BELGRADE – Croatia is making unprovoked, empty threats against Serbia, but it should be careful because there already are major objections in the EU and the international community to the tone of Zagreb’s rhetoric, says Serbian First Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Ivica Dacic.

Zagreb is violating its own decision not to make an issue of bilateral matters when it comes to Serbia’s membership in the EU and international organisations, Dacic said in an interview published by Blic on Sunday.

Commenting on Croatia’s threats to block Serbia’s EU integration unless Serbian Radical Party leader Vojislav Seselj is extradited to the ICTY, Dacic responded that the issue should be addressed by the Tribunal, and not by Serbia, adding that there are many more people like Seselj in Croatia.

The question is whether Croatia wants to aggravate its relations with Serbia, or normalise them, he added.

“We want a normalisation of relations, but we are also prepared to defend our national interests,” said Dacic, who added that Serbia will seek an EU reaction to the messages coming from Zagreb.

He expressed confidence that the EU will not let Croatia’s objections block Serbia’s accession path.