EU "not asking" that Serbia snubs Moscow parade
The participation of Serbian soldiers in the military parade in Moscow on May 9 "does not affect Serbia's attitude towards European integration."Source: Beta
It also does not affect the country's obligations undertaken when it became the chair of the OSCE, Serbian Foreign Minister Ivica Dacic said in Belgrade on Wednesday.
He noted that the decision to send Serbian soldiers to Moscow for the marking of the 70th anniversary of victory over fascism was made by President Tomislav Nikolic in accordance with the Constitution and laws.
Dacic said that this event is of historic importance for Serbia and that the Serbian Army should participate "everywhere around the world where victory over fascism is celebrated."
"It does not affect our attitude towards European integration, obligations and responsibilities that we have as chairman of the OSCE, nor does it have anything to do with who we favor. We favor to celebrate victory over fascism, we have given a great number of human lives to that end," Dacic said at a joint press conference with OSCE Secretary General Lamberto Zannier.
He stressed that "other countries will also participate in the celebrations in Moscow," and that "German Chancellor Angela Merkel will lay flowers at a monument in the Russian capital on May 10."
According to Dacic, Serbian officials have not received any information from the EU that the Serbian army "should not participate in the parade in Moscow."
Zannier also commented on this issue to say that he "agreed with the Serbian minister that the participation of the Serbian military in the parade in Moscow was a government decisions in terms of its foreign policy."
"That does not change the role of Serbia as a country that needs to position itself during a phase when polarization is growing," Zannier said, adding that "Serbia meets the requirements that are placed before it."
"It is important to keep all channels of communication open, in this sense, Serbia is fulfilling its role," said the secretary general of the OSCE.