FM on change of negotiation's format, Pristina's UN ambition

Serbian Foreign Minister Ivica Dacic says he does not believe that a change to the format of the Belgrade-Pristina dialogue is possible.

Source: Tanjug, Prva TV
(Tanjug, file)
(Tanjug, file)

Speaking for Prva TV late on Monday, Dacic also said that he had no information that former US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice could become her country's special envoy for the Balkans.

"I saw Condoleezza about 20 days ago in the UAE. I also met with John Kerry. They have been freed, so to speak, of their political obligations. She didn't tell me that she had such ambitions, and we spoke about it publicly," Dacic stressed.

He also recalled that the Kosovo dialogue was "transferred to the EU" on the proposal of then Serbian President Boris Tadic, and Catherine Ashton, the EU foreign policy chief at the time.

"I don't believe that some change to the format is possible. Why would somebody include only one side? Washington cannot join - although, they can join. Each time I went to Brussels some (US State Department official) Hoyt Yee of the time was waiting to see me. They've always been there, behind the scenes...," Dacic said.

"We need Trump, we need Tillerson... the new administration. The old administration doesn't want to solve the problem, but to legalize what they did in the Balkans," he said.

Speaking for RTS on Tuesday, Dacic reiterated his claim that Pristina was manipulating its list of countries that have recognized Kosovo, with the goal of this being an additional incentive for new recognitions.

"I think that great changes will occur, because after Catalonia, many countries around the world realized where this leads to, and many countries cooled off. Catalonia is going the way of Kosovo. Kurdistan is going the way of Kosovo," the minister stressed.

"With two thirds, that is, with recognition from 129 UN members, they would become a member of the General Assembly. As long as Russia is on our side they will never become a UN member," he stressed.

Speaking about the internal dialogue, Dacic said it was launched to find a lasting solution for Kosovo and Metohija (KiM).

"They say, we have a lasting solution, we got independence. They say, we will get a UN chair - to put it colloquially, when pigs fly they will," Dacic continued.

Asked whether he still thinks "a delineation" was the best solution for KiM, Dacic replied by saying that he still thinks this was "the only realistic and lasting solution at this time."

"Serbia will not lead any kind of war, the problem of Kosovo in terms of independence has not been solved. We've been waiting for 20 years, and if we hadn't, I think we would have a better solution," he said.

Asked whether (Serbia's) "recognition of Kosovo" would be hidden in an agreement on comprehensive normalization of relations between Belgrade and Pristina, Dacic said that former EU Commissioner Stefan Fule was the one who came up with the formulation - "without knowing himself what it means."

"Nobody knows what it means. Let's not look into a crystal ball for its meaning. It doesn't mean anything," said the foreign minister.

And when asked whether Serbia would face the choice of "Kosovo or the EU" at the end of its EU (accession) road, Dacic had no dilemma: in that case, there will be no EU road.

"That's my opinion. If Europe should be capable of posing such a question, formulated like that, then it means that all EU states have recognized Kosovo. Since that will not happen, we will not be faced with that dilemma with the EU," he concluded.


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