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Serbia to continue protecting its sovereignty despite external pressure, president says

August 02, 2017, 16:13 UTC+3 BELGRADE

Belgrade intends to remain militarily neutral and refuse joining NATO and other military blocs

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BELGRADE, August 2. /TASS/. Serbia will continue protecting its sovereignty and upholding its independence in decision-making, despite the growing external pressure, Serbia’s President Aleksandar Vucic said on Wednesday in a conversation with former Italy’s Foreign Minister Franco Frattini.

"Despite the growing external pressure, Serbia will continue preserving and protecting its political postulates, its sovereignty and independence in taking important decisions," Vucic stressed.

Frattini believes that Serbia should continue providing stability in the region. He noted that Belgrade "is able to reach high results on its way to accession within the EU." Still, "the preservation of policy that they have been building up for so long will become the biggest challenges for the Serbs," he said.

Serbia’s official foreign policy includes accession to the EU while maintaining friendly relations with Russia and China and bolstering relations with the US. Belgrade intends to remain militarily neutral and refuse joining NATO and other military blocs. This position provokes objections in Brussels: Serbia was informed numerous times that European integration will become possible only after fulfillment of two demands - recognizance of Kosovo’s independence and breakup in Serbian-Russian relations, including closure of the Russian-Serbian Humanitarian Center in Nis.

The terms for Serbia’s accession to the EU were not specified. European diplomats note that it can happen not earlier than in 10-20 years.

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