"About 25 Serbian citizens fighting in Middle East"

BELGRADE -- BIA Director Aleksandar Djordjevic says Serbia has invested considerable efforts in the fight against terrorism and Islamic extremism in the previous period.

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The BIA logo

Addressing the Rose-Roth Seminar of the NATO Parliamentary Assembly in the Serbian parliament building, the head of the Security- Information Agency underscored that BIA was "intensely working on identification of individuals wishing to fight on battlefields abroad."

BIA's action is continuous and it is aimed primarily at preventive identification of individuals staying in war zones and those who have already returned, Djordjevic said.

The number of people from Serbia in Syria and the Near East is small since as few as 25 Serbian citizens are in the region, he said and added that he does not have exact data concerning Kosovo and Metohija where he believes the problem is more prominent.

After the adoption of the law to ban Serbian citizens from participating in wars abroad, "a large number of them returned to the country," primarily those who were in Ukraine, he said.

Djordjevic also pointed to the connection between extremist Islamists from the Balkans and similar structures in Europe.