FM discusses Srebrenica incident, Storm parade, Greece

"It's incredible that no one has yet been arrested for the attack on Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic in Potocari," says Serbian Foreign Minister Ivica Dacic.

Source: B92

Speaking for B92 TV on Thursday afternoon, Dacic said "actions speak louder than words," and that Serbia "as a serious country cannot simply close its eyes to the incident."

The minister added that Serbia wants Bosnia's leaders to "publicly state their position, conduct a thorough investigation, and punish both the organizers and the perpetrators." He also stressed that now "statements are being heard that relativize the attack."

"It is an undeniable desire of Serbia to continue with the policy of peace, but that cannot diminish the gravity of the incident. It was an attack on the prime minister of Serbia, one of the most serious incidents that can occur between two countries. In Serbia, this could never happen. It is clear that our hand is outstretched, but we expect the results of the investigation," Dacic said, and pointed out that the visit to Serbia of Bosnian Presidency members "has not yet been agreed."

The minister stressed that Serbia is seeking answers to the questions "who is to blame and why it happened."

"The Serbian prime minister was in their territory and they were under obligation to guarantee his safety," said Dacic.

Speaking about an announced referendum in the Serb Republic entity on state-level justice system in Bosnia-Herzegovina, Dacic said that "in this case as well, Serbia is interested in Bosnia's full stability."

"This means that we respect all three peoples, both entities. This is a question for the RS, we respect the Dayton Agreement, Bosnia's integrity, but also respect the jurisdictions of the RS. Nothing can be imposed, and everything must be discussed," Dacic said.

He also stressed that "it is not the only issue which should be discussed" and added that the EU has initiated the process of talks on Bosnia's "European path."

"Serbia wants to have a stabilizing effect. We are absolutely against a revision of the Dayton agreement contrary to the will of any of the peoples," he said.

Dacic stressed that recent events "must be carefully considered" and explained he had in mind "the case of Naser Oric, the attack in Srebrenica, and now the questions about the central authorities in Bosnia-Herzegovina."

Speaking on the upcoming anniversary of Operation Storm in Croatia and the announced military parade, Dacic said it is tantamount to "a military parade being organized in Banja Luka (RS) on July 11, on the occasion of Srebrenica."

"Several thousand Serbs were killed during Operation Storm, hundreds of thousands were expelled. That day may be celebrated in Croatia, while in Serbia it is a day of great mourning, and as you can see almost all the countries in the region have decided not to participate in the parade. That day is interpreted differently and I thank those countries for deciding not to participate," said Dacic.

He added that Serbia "respects others' victims, but also respects his own."

"The fact we have not been emphasizing them, respecting the symmetry during the war - that is on the heads of the Serbian leadership," said Dacic, adding that "it now turns out that when Serbia talks about its victims, it wants instability."

Asked to comment about Greece and "announcement of a change of stance of that country towards the independence of Kosovo," Dacic said he "does not believe that this position has changed."

"Slovakia, Romania, and Greece all have had some moves of small opening toward Pristina in previous years but have not changed the stance towards the unilaterally proclaimed independence. We will talk to them, because a recognition would not be in accordance with international law, our friendship, and especially not with the situation that exists in Cyprus," said Dacic.


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