"Whenever EU talks about something else, they mean Kosovo"
A broad consensus and the will of a majority in our society must exist for a legally binding agreement with Pristina to be reached.Source: Tanjug
President Aleksandar Vucic said this in an interview published on Wednesday by Belgrade daily Vecernje Novosti.
Asked whether Serbia could sign a legally-binding agreement with the so-called "Kosovo" - and still not be allowed to join the EU, the Serbian president replied that he "would not view it as a barter."
"Do you want to do something, and in return, get something else? It is in Serbia's interest to reach an agreement with Albanians, regardless of whether we will become a member of the EU. But, if that happens, I am convinced that the door would be not ajar, but wide open," said Vucic.
According to him, "even if our GDP grew fivefold and if we were again the champion of reforms, the EU will ultimately condition us with resolving the issue of Kosovo."
"There is no doubt that this is the key issue and whenever they tell us something else, they actually think about Kosovo. So we want to reach some kind of compromise solution. But Albanians also need to understand that they will not have a future wither, unless there is no agreement. For Serbia to give everything, without getting anything, it is neither realistic nor possible," he said.
Vucic added that he received "from some of the big players on the world stage" something that "resembles principles, something that represents a non-paper."
"All I can say about that is - even if it was asked whether it would accept it or not, Serbia could hardly provide a positive answer to these proposals," Vucic said.
According to him, "it is difficult for them to come up with a new proposal, because big Western powers proceed from the territorial issue of Kosovo and Metohija being resolved by gaining their independence."
"And they will not give up on that. And it's our job to try to see what we can get, both for Serbs in Kosovo and Metohija, but also for Serbia. Many people forget that. It's not only a matter of Serbs in Kosovo and Metohija. They are most important, their security, safety, life, economic progress, perspectives, future. But that's not an issue only for them, it's an issue for all those who live in Serbia," Vucic is convinced.
He said he would come out with his proposal "when he thinks it is good for our country and when we can gain a certain result."
When asked if there is any point in the dialogue with Pristina when the main negotiator on the other side says the talks, and the Community of Serb Municipalities (ZSO) are just a waste of time - Vucic that he "sees a bigger problem in that."
"For three years I have been saying all the time that I do not believe they will ever implement that, and Pristina has not yet met its sole obligation (from the Brussels agreement," he said.
"They are not interested in that at all. The problem is that no one else, especially those who mediate in our talks, have reacted, that is, essentially, the problem," the president stressed.
"But what now? We will not cry or whine, but continue to work and fight. Are we in a difficult situation? We are, but that's how it is," he said.
Regarding the claims of some opposition leaders that he will agree to give Kosovo UN chair, and that he was taking Serbia to NATO "by the back door" - Vucic said these accusations are made by "robbers and thieves who have stolen millions of faiths" and who are proceeding from themselves.
"This is being said by a man who, together with the previous leadership, put not only the seal, but also sealed the envelope, and then added the wax to the envelope of Kosovo's independence, insisting on a stupid, irresponsible and frivolous question submitted to the International Court of Justice, which made our position much more difficult," he added.
Vucic once again reiterated that Serbia has no aspiration when it comes to membership in NATO.