Russian envoy asks: Are there no Serbs here?

Russian Ambassador Aleksandr Konuzin on Thursday voiced strong criticism of the participants of the Belgrade Security Forum who came from Serbia.

Source: Beta

The diplomat accused them of not defending their own country's interests when it came to Kosovo.

"Are there no Serbs in this room?," Konuzin exclaimed at one point, speaking "in an emotional manner and raising his voice", according to reports.

The panel of the forum that the Russian envoy was attending was dedicated to global security changes.

Konuzin accused NATO and its troops in Kosovo, KFOR, of "at this point violating (UNSC) Resolution 1244, because they wish to bring Kosovo customs and soldiers to the border with Serbia, while no participant in the forum is mentioning that".

The ambassador continued to say that interests of Serbia will be defended by Russia and Serbian Foreign Minister Vuk Jeremić at the meeting of the UN Security Council later in the day, and added that "here in this room there is nobody defending Serbia's interests".

He further stated that there were people in Serbia ready to sell economic facilities to "anyone but not to Russians", even though they were aware this would mean the demise of those facilities.

After addressing the panel for some 15 minutes, the diplomat angrily left the event that brought together ministers of several European countries, foreign policy and security experts, and journalists.

The forum, which was opened this morning by President Boris Tadić, was organized by the Fund for Political Excellence and the European Movement in Serbia.


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