Friday, June 1, 2012

Nikolic: I will not give up on Kosovo

PODGORICA - Serbian President Tomislav Nikolic has said that no one has so far placed Kosovo's recognition before him as a requirement for Serbia's progress in EU integration, adding that he would not comply if it happened.

It is a hypothetical question whether someone is going to set that requirement or not, he told TV Montenegro in an interview broadcast on Thursday evening, adding that he was not on the list of those who would accept EU integration while giving up on Kosovo.

When asked if there was any type of situation in which he would recognize Kosovo, Nikolic responded: "There is no such situation. There are things in life you cannot do."

The president stated he wanted good relations with everyone in the region and the best possible relations with Montenegro.
"I am going to do everything so Serbia and Montenegro would cooperate excellently, but I will not keep quiet about any potential violations of the rights of Serbs in Montenegro," he noted, adding that he thought the Montenegrin government
should accept Serbs as an equal partner, because it is the only way for the country to move forward.

He remarked that his view had been that Montenegro should not secede from Serbia, but since it did, he recognized it as an independent state.

"But I do not recognize the difference between Serbs and Montenegrins, because there is none," he pointed out.
It is unnatural for Belgrade to have better relations with Zagreb than Podgorica nowadays, he said.

"We wish to have excellent relations with Croatia, but also with Montenegro," Nikolic underlined.
When asked if he would visit Srebrenica, Bosnia-Herzegovina, and "condemn the genocide," Nikolic answered that such a thing would probably not happen, because it had already been done by his predecessor.

"There was no genocide in Srebrenica. A great crime happened in Srebrenica that was committed by some members of the Serb people, who should be found, tried and punished," said Nikolic.

When asked if he would be in the shadow of (Democratic Party leader) Boris Tadic if he became Serbia's prime minister, Nikolic replied negatively.

"The president of Serbia has enough authority and work to do, so I will definitely not be in Tadic's shadow," he stated.

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