BELGRADE – Serbian President Tomislav Nikolic has said he had been shocked by Croatian President Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic’s public apology for giving Serbian-made chocolate bars to a group of children in Dubrovnik earlier this week.
All this indicates that Croatia does not want good relations with Serbia, Nikolic told the Kurir daily.
If the Croats have a problem with Serbian chocolate bars, then all the talk of friendship between the two countries is useless, and we may yet expect unpleasant things from the Croats, Nikolic said.
“Of course I would not have a problem with giving children Croatian chocolate bars,” Nikolic said.
The president of Croatia has issued a public apology for handing out packages of sweets that included Serbia-made chocolate to children in Dubrovnik, the ancient Adriatic Sea resort attacked and damaged by the Serb-led Yugoslav army in 1991.
President Kolinda Grabar Kitarovic’s made the apology under pressure from Croatian nationalists.
But Serb politicians responded with anger to her gesture, calling for a boycott of Croatian goods in Serbia. Some even demanded cutting ties between the two neighboring countries.
Grabar Kitarovic said she was “unpleasantly surprised” to learn the packages distributed in Dubrovnik this week included the Serbian chocolate product after the children’s parents complained.
“We will apologize to parents and replace the chocolate with Croatian products,” Grabar Kitarovic said Wednesday. “Products that were not Croatian-made and which are sold in the Croatian market found their way into that package … that will not happen again.”