Nikolic in regional events, invited to visit Bosnia in fall

The Brdo-Brijuni Process leaders stressed in Sarajevo the need for trust-building, understanding, reconciliation in the region, support for EU integration.

Source: Beta, Tanjug
Serbian, Slovenian, and Montenegrin presidents Nikolic, Pahor, Vujanovic (Tanjug)
Serbian, Slovenian, and Montenegrin presidents Nikolic, Pahor, Vujanovic (Tanjug)

The participants also urged "refraining from rhetoric and moves that could stir tensions in the region," Tanjug reported.

Presenting the summit's conclusions on Sunday, Chairman of the Presidency of Bosnia-Herzegovina Bakir Izetbegovic said the leaders had agreed to take concrete actions to try and resolve open issues through an intensive dialogue, bilateral and multilateral agreements, and make a joint plan for a coordinated fight against global security threats.

The leaders also agreed to make an effort to build a better education system so as to prevent a brain drain, raise economic competitiveness, ensure a free flow of people, goods and capital, improve connectivity through energy and infrastructure projects.

The participants of the Brdo-Brijuni Process also highlighted the need for implementing European standards and promoting European values through political, economic, social and other reforms.

Visit to Bosnia, relations with Croatia

Serbian President Tomislav Nikolic should make an official visit to Bosnia-Herzegovina in the fall, as he accepted the invitation from Chairman of the Presidency of Bosnia-Herzegovina Bakir Izetbegovic on Sunday.

Nikolic was in Sarajevo to take part in Summit100 business conference on Saturday and the Brdo-Brijuni Leaders' Meeting on Sunday, for the first time since taking office.

Nikolic's official bilateral visit to Bosnia-Herzegovina has so far been cancelled several times.

Nikolic voiced confidence on Sunday that the issues with Croatia, along Serbia's EU path, would be overcome in direct talks, and advocated for the region to act in concert to ensure quicker EU integration.

Nikolic said he had discussed the issue with his Croatian counterpart, Kolinda Grabar Kitarovic, adding that Croatia had tried to halt Serbia with demands that it could not entirely justify or prove to the EU.

There are some politicians in Croatia that would like Serbia not to become a fully- fledged member of the EU, Nikolic told a news conference after Sunday's Brdo-Brijuni Process meeting in Sarajevo, voicing hope they would remain a political minority in Croatia.

In today's meeting, the focus was on our desire to join the bloc, and how to act in concert to ensure that there is no gap of 10-15 years between successive accessions, the Serbian president said, according to Tanjug.

Beta is reporting that that Nikolic announced in Sarajevo on Sunday "a meeting of state officials and experts from Serbia and Croatia soon," that would discuss the next steps that needed to be taken to resolve the recent disputes in Serbia's European integration process.

At the same time, Nikolic said that Croatia could not justify its stance that Serbia had not met the requirements for opening Chapter 23 in the process of association with the EU.

"Croatia took the opportunity to halt Serbia with demands which it might say were justified, but has failed to fully prove that to Europe, too," Nikolic told reporters, adding he believed "Serbia will have the chapter open," adding that it was ready to deal with all of Croatia's justified demands.

He went on to say that Serbia had no intention of joining any military alliance, but would continue to support UN and EU peacekeeping operations.

Nikolic added that the leaders of the region had shown understanding of Serbia's position and, as he put it, "The fact that there are differences between the countries of the region regarding membership in NATO is a matter for each individual state."


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