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“Just several days ago we heard a rude and, I should say, a caddish statement from one of the EU high-ranking officials in regard to an independent sovereign state of Serbia. It was stated so: you should join the so-called anti-Russian sanctions or otherwise there is no place for you in the European Union,” Naryshkin told an international conference in Kazakhstan’s capital Astana.
Naryshkin said such an EU stance contradicts the norms of the international law and is in fact blackmail. “Undoubtedly, such steps have nothing in common with the principles of sovereign equality or the principles of respect towards history, culture and traditions of the partner-state,” he said.Last week, Johannes Hahn, the EU Commissioner for Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations, said Serbia should bring its foreign political position in line with the European stance by imposing anti-Russian economic sanctions.
Meanwhile, both Serbian President Tomislav Nikolic and Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic said that Serbia would not impose sanctions on Russia despite its goal to join the European Union. Nikolic, however, admitted that the EU membership which Serbia was seeking implies an obligation to pursue a common foreign policy.
Russian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Alexander Lukashevich said on Thursday Moscow hopes that Serbia will remember the friendly nature of relations with Russia when it makes a decision whether it should join the EU sanctions against Russia.