Vučić: Meeting with Rama was "not easy"

Aleksandar Vučić said on Monday the one-on-one meeting with his Albanian counterpart Edi Rama had lasted longer than planned and "has not been easy at all."

Source: Tanjug
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But he added that he believed that problems the two sides shared could be solved.

Addressing a joint news conference in Belgrade before Rama spoke - after which he accused the guest of provocation and a breach of protocol - Vučić thanked the visiting official for accepting his invitation to come to Serbia.

"This visit marks a new beginning and I hope the pragmatic relations between Serbia and Albania will be focused on improving not only our mutual political and economic relations, but on making relations across the region better," he stated.

Rama's visit is the first visit by an Albanian official to Serbia in 68 years and that is good news not just for Serbia and Albania, but others as well, he pointed out, stressing that problems could only be solved through dialogue.

Both in Serbia and Albania today, it is much easier to stir chauvinist and nationalist tensions and use harsh words to gain political points, the Serbian prime minister said.

Vučić stressed that he is not elected to make demagogic or popular statements, but to focus on the future and the progress of Serbia, adding that he is proud to see the two countries turn over a new leaf in their relations, and on their joint path towards the EU.

“We have initiated the reforms, but we cannot see them through without a serious policy in the region,” Vučić pointed out.

The prime ministers of Serbia and Albania have agreed to work towards an agreement that would allow the citizens of both countries to travel across the state border with only their ID cards.

“We want our minorities - the Serb in Albania and the Albanian in Serbia - to build a bridge of cooperation, and we want to present major infrastructure projects to the European Union together,” Vučić said.

He noted that one of the topics discussed with Rama was the cooperation between the young, but also the economic cooperation between the two countries.

“We want Serbian investors to visit Albania, not only related to the energy sector but also to other fields of mutual interest,” the prime minister said.

The talks specifically addressed the project of Belgrade-Tirana railway, added Vučić, noting that the project will gain the EU support easier if the two countries jointly insist on it.

Albanian Prime Minister Rama was greeted upon his arrival in front of the Palace of Serbia by the Serbian prime minister and the delegation comprising Foreign Minister Ivica Dačić, Interior Minister Nebojša Stefanović, Economy Minister Željko Sertić and Director of the Serbian Government's Office for Kosovo and Metohija Marko Đurić.

The national anthems of Serbia and Albania were sounded and the officials took a salute from the Honorary Guard of the Serbian Armed Forces.

The Albanian prime minister's visit, which has attracted great interest, will be covered by around 200 accredited journalists, including 30 from the Albanian media.

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