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Slovakia, full support for Serbia towards EU membership

PM Pellegrini in Belgrade. Pristina does not respect agreements

31 May, 10:18
(ANSA) - BELGRADE - Slovakian Prime Minister Peter Pellegrini, visiting Belgrade on Thursday, expressed his country's strong support for Serbia's prospect of European integration and Serbian stance on Kosovo. After talks with his counterpart Ana Brnabic, Pellegrini said that his country is a strong supporter of the EU's enlargement to the Western Balkans, and hopes that Serbia will be able to join the Union as soon as possible. "We will do anything we can to help Serbia make progress on this difficult path," said Pellegrini, who had been received by president Aleksandar Vucic before he met Brnabic. Slovakia is among the five EU countries that do not recognize Kosovo's independence, along with Spain, Romania, Greece, and Cyprus, and the prime minister confirmed this stance. Moreover, Pellegrini condemned the tariffs increased by 100% and imposed by Kosovo on Serbian and Bosnian imports, and criticized the police operation conducted in northern Kosovo (Serb majority area). Slovakia, he underlined, expected a stronger reaction from the EU. "We are concerned over the fact that Pristina does not fulfill the commitments deriving from the Brussels agreement (2013). We are on the side of Serbia and we will always be critical of what Kosovo is doing". Slovakia, he added, supports dialogue but Kosovo must respect the agreements. In Thursday's talks, both sides underlined the excellent state of bilateral relations, and the Serbian leadership thanked for supporting Serbia's European path.

Slovakia has deployed over 140 police officers to strengthen controls on the Serbian-Bulgarian border in the fight against illegal immigration. On the sidelines of the talks, the two heads of government signed an agreement that resolves the problem of Serbia's debt to Slovakia. (ANSA).

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