Islamists want Balkans - but represent "no direct threat"

Security experts have told the media that "although Serbia is under no direct threat from Islamic terrorism, such intentions should be taken seriously."

Source: Tanjug

The decision to raise security to a higher level is justified, Dragan Simeunovic and Zoran Dagisic, who teach at the Faculty of Political Sciences and the Faculty of Security, respectively, have told the Belgrade-based broadcaster TV Pink.

Commenting on a map that showed the Balkans - including Serbia - incorporated into "the Islamic State" Simeunovic said the country was under threat "in a wider sense - but not directly."

He pointed out that while "the Islamic State has marked its goal to create a worldwide caliphate state that includes the Balkans, their powers are not such that they could carry it out."

"The only thing they could do," said this expert, "is to, like in France, create incidents, or for what happened in Zvornik to take place."

According to him, "prevention is better," while "their intentions should be taken extremely seriously even when they're not very realistic."

Dragisic said the Islamic State "declared war on the western civilization the as soon as it was formed," and noted it already has control over "large parts of Syria and Iraq."

"It was thought that the sporadic terrorist attacks would stop, but the latest events show that these expectations were unrealistic and that more can be expected in the future," he said, warning that "Islamic State leaders have called for the attacks to increase during the month of Ramadan."

Dragisic stressed that "British services have reacted and prevented a big terrorist attacks," and that "Serbia also reacted."

"There's no need to spread panic nor intimidate people that something terrible will happen, but measures of caution and raising the level of security - that's more than justified," concluded Dragisic.

In the wake of a series of terrorists attacks in Europe, the Middle East, and north Africa last week, authorities in the Serb Republic in Bosnia-Herzegovina decided to increase security around the entity's institutions.

In Serbia, Interior Minister Nebojsa Stefanovic on Sunday convened a collegium of his ministry that analyzed "the comprehensive security situation" in the country.

A statement from the meeting said that "the collegium discussed all security measures that the police would take in the coming period to preserve stability and ensure security for all citizens of Serbia."

It added that "the current migration issue and measures undertaken by the Serbian police to tackle the problem with respect for the rights and freedoms of asylum seekers" were also discussed.

Stefanovic told the meeting that he had spoken about the issue with foreign partners and that the Serbian police was already making efforts to improve state border protection.


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