FM reacts to claim of Belgrade's "colonial tendencies"

Foreign Minister Ivica Dacic has rejected claims of the Kosovo Ambassador to the U.S. Vlora Citaku about Belgrade's "colonial tendencies toward Pristina."

Source: Tanjug, srbija.gov.rs
(Screen capture, RTS)
(Screen capture, RTS)

Speaking at the end of the UN Security Council session on Kosovo, Dacic said that "we are not colonizers and will not allow to be spoken about in that way in the UN Security Council."

"What kind of colonialism are you talking about? Here sit countries that were liberated from colonialism. The first capital of Serbia was in Kosovo, the Serbian churches - you think it's enough that you come here and that you are supported by Western countries, to be able to say falsehoods?," asked the Serbian foreign minister.

In his reply, Dacic noted that Citaku's speech about Kosovo "shows how an ideal country is imagined."

"I wonder why migrants who pass through the Balkans do not go to Kosovo, since it's such an ideal country, but instead their citizens are fleeing from Kosovo to Western Europe. What kind of a country are you talking about?," said he.

Dacic also mentioned NATO's 1999 bombing of Serbia, saying that the decision was illegal and made without the UN Security Council consent.

"From the beginning your plan has been the unification with Albania, you are not a Kosovar, you are an Albanian, we're talking about a national minority in another country which unilaterally declared its independence," said Dacic.

He said that Serbia "does not need the support of anyone from the outside."

"Let's solve our problems, you're hiding behind the big brother. No one will bring you a solution as they did with bombs in 1999. Those days, unfortunately for you, are over," concluded the Serbian minister.

Earlier, Citaku said before the UN Security Council in New York that Belgrade "has no rights to ownership" over the mining complex Trepca.

The meeting of the UN Security Council was called to consider UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon's latest report covering on the work of the UN mission in Kosovo, UNMIK, covering the period from July 16 to Oct.ober15.

In it, Ban said he was "impressed with the economic and political progress in Kosovo since the end of the conflict, but that agreements achieved during the Belgrade-Pristina dialog were still slow in implementation," the Beta agency has reported.

Ban also "advocates the inclusion of minority communities in decisions that affect their lives and urged the authorities of Kosovo to refrain from all actions and decisions that could hinder the progress of the dialog."

In his address to the Council, First Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Ivica Dacic condemned the attempted confiscation of Trepca by the provisional institutions of self-government in Pristina, as well as the looting of private property of Kosovo Serbs and the Serbian Orthodox Church, the Serbian government said on its website.

Dacic said that Serbia expects member states of the UN Security Council to use their authority to repeal the Law on Trepca adopted by the provisional institutions of self-government in Pristina.

He added that, otherwise, Kosovo and Metohija will become a "black hole" of Europe, where private property is absolutely unprotected.

In the interest of regional stability, we will continue the dialogue with Pristina, primarily in order to solve life problems of the people who live in Kosovo, Dacic said.

The role of the international community is to assist in reaching a compromise, and not to help one side to impose their interests, said Dacic.

The First Deputy Prime Minister stressed that Serbia will never recognize the unilaterally proclaimed independence of Kosovo, but will continue the policy of peaceful resolution of this issue, based on a responsible approach and with the full implementation of the agreements reached in the framework of the Brussels dialogue.

Dacic said that Serbia, despite numerous challenges and frequent absence of constructive approach, will remain devoted to work on the normalization of relations.

"We do not want the situation in Kosovo to be a latent threat to the stability and progress of Serbia and the region, and that is why we are committed to continue to engage in the peaceful settlement of disputes, yet we are aware that we have a long-term process," said Dacic.

He also called on countries that have not recognized the unilaterally proclaimed independence of Kosovo to resist the pressures that many of them suffer and to remain consistent in their principled respect for international law, the UN Charter and the supreme authority of the UN Security Council to preserve international peace and security, whose Resolution 1244 reaffirmed the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the Republic of Serbia.

He pointed out that Serbia wants an opportunity for dialogue and agreement rather than unilateralism.

Dacic "reiterated that Serbia is sincerely committed to peace, dialogue, reconciliation and regional stability, i.e., lasting solutions that will lead to the future rather than past conflicts."

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