PM rejects claims that ruling coalition is in trouble

BELGRADE -- Serbian Prime Minister Ivica Dačić on Friday rejected speculations of a possibility of early parliamentary elections in 2013.

Ivica Dačić (Tanjug, file)
Ivica Dačić (Tanjug, file)

He at the same time stressed that the ruling parties had not discussed the subject - "as there were no problems in the coalition".

“For someone to run in an election before the time scheduled, there should be either a political decision or major issues leading to the breakup of the coalition involved. We have no problems in the coalition,” Dačić told Tanjug.

He said that elections would not create a “good atmosphere in 2013 - the year of great trials,” in which it would be important for Serbia to resolve “the historical question of a date for the start of European Union membership negotiations, which is conditioned by achieving significant results in the dialogue with Pristina.”

The Serb Progressive Party (SNS) and the Socialist Party of Serbia (SPS) might possibly benefit of an early election, since based on a current opinion poll, the two parties would win more than 60 percent of the seats together, but this is not a question of our party interests, said Dačić.

There was no talk of early elections within the ruling coalition, he said, because this is not a priority in the coming year.

The Serbian prime minister pointed out that the EU voiced a positive opinion on the ruling coalition as Belgrade had made progress in the dialogue with Pristina and achieved good results in the fight against crime and corruption and in internal reforms.

“I think it would be an absolute mistake not to take advantage of this favorable situation. This is why I think that the next year should not be an election year, despite the possibility of elections bringing in a new constellation of relations,” concluded Dačić.