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Serbian president confident EU accession will not aggravate relations with Russia

June 23, 2017, 13:14 UTC+3 BELGRADE

Russia has donated six Mikoyan MiG-29 multipurpose fighter jets to Serbia

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Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic

Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic

© AP Photo/Darko Vojinovic

BELGRADE, June 23. /TASS/. Serbia’s accession to the European Union will not aggravate friendly relations between Belgrade and Moscow, Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic said following his meeting with Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin on Friday.

"European integration is a strategic priority for Serbia but that should not and will not change our good relations with Russia, besides, we are determined to refrain from imposing sanctions," Vucic told reporters. The Serbian president added that it was necessary to take advantage of good political relations because "there are immense opportunities in various spheres." The parties agreed that the current cooperation in the energy sphere, agriculture and other fields should be enhanced.

According to the Serbian presidential press service, the parties particularly discussed military cooperation. The Serbian president expressed gratitude to Moscow for providing military hardware to Belgrade for free. Rogozin proposed that Russia and Serbia boost aviation cooperation.

Russia has donated six Mikoyan MiG-29 multipurpose fighter jets to Serbia, which will be revamped and delivered to the country until the year ends. Besides, the Serbian military will also receive 30 T-72 tanks and 30 BRDM-2 combat vehicles. The possibility of providing Serbia with Buk-M1 and Buk-M2 anti-aircraft missile systems, as well as with Tunguska anti-aircraft missile and gun complexes, is currently under consideration.

Besides, at the meeting between the Serbian president and the Russian deputy prime minister, an agreement was reached to jointly celebrate the 75th anniversary of the Stalingrad Battle.

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