Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic said Friday in a televised press conference that his country remains strongly committed to joining the European Union, but will not change its policy towards Russia.
Vucic stressed that Belgrade will not impose sanctions on Moscow due to its military operation against Ukraine, without directly stating this.
“From the third day of the conflict in Ukraine, we have revealed our position and after 70 days we stick to it, “he added.
On February 25, the Serbian leader said that his country fully supports the territorial integrity of Ukraine and considers the Russian operation “a very bad thing”, but that it will not impose sanctions on Russia.
He stressed that he was “under pressure” to harmonize Belgrade’s policy with that of EU member states and to impose sanctions on Russia.
And he added: “Serbia will not trample or destroy its friendships in Eastern (Europe) and I am not interested in the severity of the growing pressures.”
Vucic stressed that “only the strength of Serbia’s interests can change our position”.
However, the Serbian president made it clear that Belgrade “is more determined to move forward on its European path”.
He indicated that he is still seeking membership of the bloc, even though “for the first time a clear majority of citizens oppose membership of the European Union”, based on the results of a survey conducted by the “Ipsos” institute. in Serbia.
According to the poll indicated by the president, 44 percent of citizens oppose EU membership and 35 percent support it.
Aleksandar Vucic has managed for years to reconcile East and West, receiving important financial support from the European Union and making important economic agreements with China.
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