BELGRADE – Serbian President Tomislav Nikolic said that while dialogue between Belgrade and Brussels is necessary, Serbia should adopt a different approach to these negotiations and try to learn what future the EU authorities have in store for the country.
On October 12, Serbian President Tomislav Nikolic visited the Russian city of St. Petersburg to open his country’s honorary consulate.
During the visit, the president gave an interview to Sputnik, commenting on the latest developments in negotiations between Belgrade and Brussels, as well as the ongoing row with the Pristina administration over certain pieces of property in Kosovo.
According to Nikolic, he has always warned Serbian negotiators that in Brussels they’re facing opponents – the representatives of the EU and of the Pristina administration.
“It always pains me when I’m told that one of our demands cannot be met because it doesn’t adhere to the Kosovo legislation and constitution. I told our representatives, ‘ask them about the Serbian constitution, about why we should swallow all of this and transfer considerable authority to the Kosovo region,'” the president said.
He further explained that while the dialogue with Brussels should be continued, it must be carried out in a slightly different fashion.
“And all in all, we must finally learn from Brussels that big secret about what awaits us at the end of our road to the EU – will Belgrade be issued an ultimatum about recognition of the Kosovo’s independence?” Nikolic said.
The Serbian president also mentioned that his country wishes to know what Brussels thinks about the expropriation of Serbian property in Kosovo. “I believe that in the West, and everywhere in the world where the paradigm of liberal capitalism is accepted (that includes us), private and state property are inviolable, and wars begin when someone tries to seize a part of territory and property of another state,” he remarked.
Nikolic pointed out that Serbia once made a magnanimous gesture when it allowed other former Yugoslav republics to participate in redistribution of the former socialist republic’s property, which resulted in Belgrade dividing property with “those who seceded by force of arms.”
“Today everyone demands his share despite seceding from Yugoslavia a long time ago. And the last thing we need now is Kosovo’s administration to seize from us something that it didn’t build,” he said, referring to the ongoing attempts by the Kosovo leadership to nationalize the Trepca Mines industrial complex.