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Serbian prime minister thanks Russia for help in fighting disastrous floods

May 23, 2014, 21:50 UTC+3 BELGRADE
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BELGRADE, May 23./ITAR-TASS/. Serbian Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic on Friday thanked Russia and his Russian counterpart Dmitry Medvedev for helping Serbia cope with the powerful floods that are hitting its central and western regions.

“Serbia and the Serbian people will always remember Russia’s self-sacrificing and timely aid. They highly appreciate this gesture as a proof of genuine friendship between the two peoples,” Vucic wrote in his letter quoted by his press service.

Vucic extended his personal gratitude to Medvedev for timely aid.

“I would like to extend my cordial gratitude for the help which the Russian government had given to Serbia in time of need,” the Serbian prime minister went on to say.

“The rains that fell out in just a few days last week caused catastrophic floods. Most regions in Central and Western Serbia are under water. We have lost many human lives and suffered great material damage. Many homes, automobile roads, railways and agricultural crops were either been damaged or destroyed. Cattle also died,” Vucic stressed in his letter to Medvedev.

“I am sure that the death toll and material damage could have been much higher if it had not been for the brave members of Russian special units who did not spare their lives to save people and their property and protect them from floods. They made an invaluable contribution to our efforts to protect ourselves from the unprecedented natural disaster and minimize the damage,” Vucic said.

He praised one Russian rescuer who was particularly brave when he jumped from a bridge into swift waters to save a flood victim without caring for personal safety.

Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu presented his condolences over a huge loss of lives caused by powerful floods in Central and Western Serbia.

“I know firsthand that the Serbian people are brave and courageous. I saw that personaly when I was involved in rendering assistance to your country in my former capacity of the (Russian) Minister for Emergency Situations,” Shoigu told the Serbian defense minister.

“We have recently managed to make our relations more dynamic in the field of education, military-technological cooperation and the production of new models of weapons and military hardware,” Shoigu went on to say.

“I hope that our relations will remain as dynamic as under your predecessor,” the Russian defence minister said.

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