Serbia Leader Scraps Planned US-Brussels Tour

Serbia Leader Scraps Planned US-Brussels Tour

By Milivoje Pantovic

Serbian Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic has confirmed that he has cancelled scheduled visits to Washington and Brussels - but without clarifying the exact reasons.


“It was my decision to cancel the trip, not theirs. This decision will not threaten our relationship with the US or the EU since I have shown them that I am serious politician,” Aleksandar Vucic told a press conference in Belgrade on Tuesday.


The Serbian leader's sudden decision to cancel planned visits to Washington and Brussels comes after he met US and EU ambassadors on Monday, a meeting which was organized at their request.


Vucic declined to say what was said at the meeting, claiming that it was a tete-a-tete discussion that should not be divulged.


However, it took place after headlines in media close to the government accused the ambassadors of destabilizing Serbia by supporting the anti-government civic movements that are protesting against the ambitious but controversial Belgrade Waterfront project.


“Serbia takes care of her dignity and I do not respond well to pressures. We will continue on our EU path, but on some issues, we [Serbia, the EU and US] have different points of view,” Vucic conceded.


He stated that Serbia would continue to enhance its relationship with EU and US - but also with Russia and China - and would go to Brussels after the formation of a new government.


Following the last general elections in April, Vucic, as head of the Serbian Progressive party, the party that won most seats, got the mandate to form a new government. It will be his second time as Prime Minister.


The President of the European Movement in Serbia, Mihailo Crnobrnja, said it was not good for Serbia that the Prime Minister had cancelled such important visits.


“Every delay, when it comes to things such as official visits, is actually a delay in the process of negotiations with the EU,” Crnobrnja said.



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