"Moscow remains consistent in its stance on Kosovo"
Russian Ambassador to Belgrade Alexander Botsan-Kharchenko said that Moscow won't recognize self-proclaimed Kosovo, as it remains consistent with its policy.Source: Tanjug
"We demand the implementation of Resolution 1244, which should be applied, both in our opinion and in accordance with international law," said Botsan Kharchenko, as a guest on the show Insider TV.
He expressed this position of Russia in response to the question whether the statement of Russian President Vladimir Putin that the self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic and Luhansk People's Republic became independent on the basis of the precedent of the International Court of Justice in deciding on the independence of so-called Kosovo means the change of status of the Serbian southern province, according to Insider.
"Kosovo is an essential issue of our friendly and fraternal cooperation and there are no signals that the Russian Federation can change its attitude towards that issue," the Russian ambassador to Serbia explained, adding that it remains a precedent in international law and a unilateral and illegitimate declaration Kosovo's independence should not be linked to the secession of Donbas.
"Citizens of the Donetsk and Luhansk republics do not recognize the government in Kyiv, which is the result of an illegitimate and unconstitutional coup," Kharchenko said, noting that they voted in a referendum to secede from Ukraine, which is not the case with Kosovo and Metohija.
Russian ambassador stated that he did not expect Serbia to impose sanctions on the Russian Federation, and assessed as positive the refusal of Serbia to apply punitive measures against Russia.
Kharchenko reminded that Serbia, as well as its president, Aleksandar Vučić, have had a consistent position since the beginning of the Russian "special military operation", and added that official Moscow knows how to appreciate that. He expressed the belief that the citizens of Serbia have a majority understanding for the Russian military operation, and assessed the insistence of the USA and the EU that Serbia imposes sanctions on Russia as "incredible pressures and hostile behavior of the West towards Serbia".
He also stated that Russia's decision to suspend gas supplies to Bulgaria and Poland, due to the refusal of those two countries to pay for Russian gas in rubles, should not affect the inflow of gas to Hungary and Serbia through the Turkish Stream gas pipeline.
"We are talking about the interruption of Bulgaria's gas supply, and not about the transit of gas through that country," Alexander Botsan Kharchenko explained, reacting to the Bulgarian Prime Minister's announcement that he would review all agreements with Russia, including those concerning transit.
Russian ambassador expects that the agreement on gas supply between Russia and Serbia, which expires on May 31, will be renewed, and in this regard he announced talks on the Gazprom-Serbia Gas route, the Government of Serbia and the Government of the Russian Federation about their content or outcome.
Speaking about the fate of NIS, in case Europe introduces a new package of sanctions against the Russian Federation, which would include that company, Kharchenko expressed the expectation that the issue would be resolved with appropriate mechanisms that would protect NIS and this type of cooperation.
"Serbia is a friendly country to Russia and we continue to cooperate in all areas," Kharchenko concluded.