PM talks about Oric and Kosovo negotiations

The decision to release Naser Oric was politically motivated and is anything but fair, Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic told an extraordinary press conference.

Izvor: B92

Friday, 26.06.2015.


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PM talks about Oric and Kosovo negotiations

"There are events after which remains a feeling of nausea, and events the nausea of which serves as a lesson. The extradition of Naser Oric was the other situation, unpleasant but instructive. Serbia will know how to learn lessons from it," said he.

Vucic added that the release of Oric is an indication that the issue of war crimes is not always a matter of justice but also of politics, "that will make you a winner."

"I'm not whining, because a man who is accused of war crimes is set free. Since the case has been transferred from Bijeljina to Sarajevo, the case cannot be seen," said Vucic.

The prime minister then pointed out that there was "only one question for the international community, and that is - who is going to give Slobodan Ilic back his eyes and who will bring him back to life."

Vucic was referring to a Serb judge in Srebrenica that Oric is accused of torturing and murdering - something the prime minister also spoke about last week.

"And who's going to bring back the tens of thousands of Serbs killed in the Drina valley by Naser Oric? I ask about (the gouging of) the eyes, because that was not done by his forces, this was done by the hands of Naser Oric," said Vucic.

The prime minister also said that he "feels very proud, because we prosecute Serbs who killed others and are not ashamed to say that."

"Our policy after this serious event will not change. Not because we are weak but because we look to the future. My hand was not accepted after the last (news) conference when I offered talks about our future. They immediately started with threats and told me not to come because they could not guarantee my safety," he said of local Muslim officials in Srebrenica.

Vucic pointed out that he "did not say a word in response to the most primitive insults," and that would go to Srebrenica to "draw the line and make a difference."

"Now they say - Naser Oric has been released, we guarantee your safety. Don't guarantee it to me, as you did not earlier. What I'm doing is for Serbia and this policy will not change," the prime minister said, adding that "the attitude of Serbia towards the Bosniak (Muslim) people will not change because of one criminal."

"We are going to have to live with Bosniaks for the next 100, 200,300, 1,000 years. I can't help those who don't understand that," said he.

"I did not make my decision because someone guarantees my safety, but so that the Bosniaks have more faith in our common future. I will make a decision on whether to go to Srebrenica a few days before the marking of the anniversary," said Vucic.

Vucic also said that he spoke to RS President Milorad Dodik earlier in the day, who was "very bitter about the decision to release Oric."

Speaking about the negotiations between Belgrade and Pristina, Vucic told the press conference that one must always "leave room to talk about," and that "after the last meeting on Tuesday the deal was not to go public with the details."

"I gave my word that this would not happen and there was nothing in any of our media," he asserted, and added: "There were no unnamed sources, nor anything similar. Hashim Thaci talked about it tonight, of course he was not telling the truth."

According to Vucic, "the bridge over the Ibar River (in Kosovska Mitrovica) was not talked about at all on Tuesday - nor was the issue of energy.

"I halted the talk about energy when I said I did not want to hear about them trying to take Serb property. Now they say - it is about to be signed. Oh, seriously? Maybe, if you replace me by then. I'm not going to sign it for you for as long as I live," said Vucic.

The prime minister also stated he "had no interest in the threats" and that the topic of the bridge on the Ibar was "invented in order to, I guess, find another way to pressure Serbs."

According to him, "we expect progress on the European path," while "we could only lose face by our own decisions, not by someone else, if we do not act honorably and responsibly."

"I do not and will not give Gazivode," he said of the lake and the hydro-power complex named after it, and added: "I was elected by citizens of Serbia and I answer to them, not to foreign embassies. My job is to take care of the government and the assets of Serbia," said Vucic, stating that "people, whether they like me or not, can see how much we work."

Speaking about the upcoming visit of the German chancellor, he said: "Mrs. Merkel is a dear guest. I cannot determine what she will do when she comes here, but at the same time she cannot determine what I will do. That's normal."

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