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Vucic: We are not interested in mutual recognition with Pristina

The president of Serbia addressed the public regarding the agreement between Belgrade and Pristina

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Aleksandar Vučić

Photo: Tanjug/Rade Prelic

Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic met today in Belgrade with Serb member of the Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) Presidency Zeljka Cvijanovic and the Serb Republic (RS) President Milorad Dodik.

After the meeting, President Vucic spoke about the agreement between Belgrade and Pristina regarding license plates.

First of all, the president wished Dodik and Cvijanovic success in performing their new duties. He congratulated them on their success and the election victory.

"I informed them about the situation in Kosovo and Metohija, as well as about some other important events. A joint team will be formed this week, we will invest a lot of money in building a memorial complex (dedicated to Ustasha victims) in Donja Gradina," said Vucic.

"We have an increasing trade exchange as far as Bosnia and Herzegovina is concerned. About 2.3 billion in the first nine months. We are getting closer to becoming BiH's number one partner soon," Vucic stressed and added that it is very important to have the best possible relations.

He also stressed that they (RS) will always have someone they can rely on in Serbia. The president also thanked the people of the RS who are always with Serbia and who care about us as much as we care about the RS.

"As early as this week we will form a team and we will be ready to invest a lot of money. The agreement is that Serbia participates with 80 percent of funding. We talked about all roadways. We remain determined and we try to stay and survive in all the projects. We also planned with Cvijanovic and Dodik the support Serbia should provide for the setting up of Serb municipalities. Dodik proposed another municipality and these are essentially the things we talked about. To see how we can further improve all our ties.

As far as BiH is concerned, we have a rising trade exchange. I think we are getting closer to becoming the number one partner of Bosnia and Herzegovina. A very important foreign trade partner for us. I congratulate Cvijanovic and Dodik on their victory, I wish them health and happiness and good work. In Serbia, they will always have someone they can rely on, and someone who will help them. I also thank the people of the RS for always being with their Serbia and for caring for us at least as much as we care for the RS," said President Vucic.

European Parliament demands an independent Kosovo

The European Parliament has adopted a resolution demanding that Serbia aligns with EU policy. Asked by reporters whether that resolution has significant political force and whether it can have consequences, Vucic replied that it is not a resolution, but a recommendation.

"The essence of the text is much more important. It's not just about sanctions (against Russia). The recommendation of the European Parliament is that we must recognize an independent Kosovo. That is much more difficult than whether we are going to impose sanctions or not. They are asking a mutual recognition from us. I guess Serbia now cares to be recognized by Pristina, so I guess that would be a mutual concession. If the position is that the most important recommendation is an independent Kosovo, this confirms my words that, even if we introduce sanctions against Russia, tomorrow they (EU) would stress the necessity of recognizing Kosovo" said Vucic.

He added that Serbia is not interested in a mutual recognition with Pristina.

"We show great respect to everyone, while we will be making decisions in accordance with the best interests of the state of Serbia," he added.

KM license plates remain

Asked what yesterday's agreement means for the people in the north of Kosovo and Metohija when it comes to license plates, Vucic said, "we are facing hypocrisy on a daily basis."

"Just 10 days ago when we were waiting for a moment and avoiding conflict, everyone was saying, why are you talking about license plates? We don't need warmongering politics. When you make a decision that is important to preserve peace, you (are seen) as again betraying and surrendering something, as if you had something. Our people will not be mistreated, the KM plates remain and survive, since others with the denomination of Kosovo municipalities, especially south of the Ibar, do not exist. Negotiations are ongoing, the KM plates are valid, people have them. As far as new cars are concerned, there are up to 90 of those per year, and the renewal process is normal and there is no obligation anywhere regarding this. People who live there can continue to drive those cars without any problems and without any fines," said Vucic.

The president pointed out that everyone is wondering about the people there, while "no one is asking what happened to Kurti's police, who wrote the fines, then withdrew that decision" and added that he thinks that Kurti got a better deal for himself last time compared to now.

"I am satisfied that we preserved peace for our people. The women who protested yesterday (in northern Kosovo) deserve peace, they deserve that their children go to Serb schools. The situation with the Serbs in Kosovo and Metohija is at a boiling point. People are fed up with the terror at the hands of the Pristina authorities. This is not a matter for political arguments, that's something that worries me too. You have seen the enormous energy that exists among the Serbs in the north of Kosovo and Metohija. The Serbs are fed up with everything, the blackmail, the mistreatment, international pressure and those who treat them like a national minority, and they do not want to be a national minority.

It shows how difficult it has been for them and how much they have been oppressed and tormented for 23 years. That's a whole generation.

You worry for 23 years whether your child will get to school or not, whether they will ask you for extra papers at administrative crossings, you must not speak Serbian... I am grateful to the people who, after 23 years of terror continue to guard their homes and fight for their children and their elders, but also for Serbia in Kosovo and Metohija and our future," he added.

He stressed that he has repeatedly stated Serbia's red lines and what topics he does not want to discuss, adding that they can stop the negotiations, but that "no serious person should brag about stopping negotiations."

"I know that we are facing a complicated situation. I have to admit that the European (EU) representatives and the Americans have been very reasonable. But all this is literally a torment. They were in a hurry to replace the Serb representatives as soon as possible instead of waiting. Great, you heard what the Serbs said - form the ZSO (Community of Serb Municipalities), and the Serbs will return to the (Pristina) institutions. The license plate requirement has been met. People are fed up, tortured, they have had enough of everything, but they were not afraid of being threatened by force because they knew that the shrine they were defending, namely their homes and children, was greater than the threats," said Vucic.

Vucic added that the position is neither easy nor simple, and that the international factor is important, but it is known that they will take Pristina's side.

"There is no one who will help us and that is why it's important to open factories, to be strong and united and to guard our country," concluded Vucic.


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