Serbian, Greek defense chiefs urge better ties

BELGRADE -- The defense ministers of Serbia and Greece, Dragan Šutanovac and Evangelos Meimarakis, met in Belgrade this Thursday.

Meirmarakis, Šutanovac in Belgade on Thursday (Beta)
Meirmarakis, Šutanovac in Belgade on Thursday (Beta)

The two ministers said that that there were huge possibilities to further boost bilateral military cooperation between their countries.

Šutanovac and Meimarakis assessed at a joint news conference that the military cooperation between Serbia and Greece was important for the stability and safety in the region.

But Šutanovac added that it had been agreed during the talks that the stability and security of the region "could not depend solely on the cooperation between those two countries".

Šutanovac expressed satisfaction over the fact that his counterpart had backed Serbia's future activities regarding international security initiatives and the NATO Partnership for Peace program.

He said that both Greece and Serbia wanted to share a same vision on Southeastern Europe stability and security, which would be based on mutual trust and cooperation.

The Greek defense minister holds that Serbia should take part in all regional security initiatives, assessing that without the country's participation in such activities, "it would be impossible to imagine the region as a stable and secure place".

The ministers agreed that the solution to the Kosovo problem based on international law would provide security and safety for this part of Europe, Beta news agency reports.

Šutanovac said that his counterparts told him Athens "supports Serbia in her efforts to protect own interests within the international law framework, since by protecting international law in Kosovo, international law is protected wherever it may be threatened".

Greek soldiers will continue to serve in KFOR in the province, and their numbers in this NATO mission will not be reduced, it was revealed.

Šutanovac expressed his gratitude for the Greek military participation in KFOR, describing it as "very important".

It was also reported that Meirmarakis accepted an invitation to have his country's Air Force take part in an air show in Serbia, planned for September this year.