"Moscow sees Vucic as unreliable" - U.S. analyst
Daniel Serwer, who on Tuesday in Belgrade met with Aleksandar Vucic, says the Serbian prime minister is clearly committed to Serbia's EU accession.Source: B92, Beta
Serwer, a professor at the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies and an expert on the Balkans, added that this makes Vucic an undesirable leader in the eyes of Russian officials, Beta agency reported.
"I think they realize that he is determined to lead Serbia into the EU. That makes him unreliable and undesirable in the eyes of of Moscow," Serwer told Belgrade-based daily Danas in an interview.
He added that Vucic is much more determined toward European integration than toward having a balanced relationship between the EU and Russia.
"Serbia has a future in Europe. Moscow will try to prevent the enlargement of Europe where it deems it has its sphere of influence, including parts of the Balkans, such as Serbia," said Serwer.
He added that Vucic showed great willingness to cooperate with NATO, but that a decision on Serbia joining the military alliance "seems quite distant."
"He recognizes the importance of the role that NATO has played in the protection of Serbs in Kosovo. However, a decision on NATO membership seems quite distant to me. Ultimately it is the decision of Serbia, which will be made much later than in Montenegro, and probably than in Kosovo and Macedonia," said Serwer.
Serbia is surrounded by many problems and instabilities, but its biggest challenge in the future will be Bosnia, not Kosovo, he told TV B92 on Tuesday.
According to Serwer, RS President Milorad Dodik is putting Serbia in a difficult position by continuing to emphasize the entity's right to hold a referendum.
He also thinks that that relations between the U.S. and Serbia are very good and encourage American investors to come here. He described the fact that Serbia has not joined western sanctions against Russia as "an inconvenience - but not a significant problem."
According to him, Russian power is diminishing - but there is a possibility that a new Serbian government will have a pro-Russian faction.