Mrkic discusses aid with ambassadors of Arab states

BELGRADE - Ivan Mrkic, the foreign policy advisor to the Serbian president, on Wednesday met with a group of ambassadors of Arab states to discuss the upcoming donor conference for aid for Serbia and Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Mrkic briefed the ambassadors of Algeria, Egypt, Iraq, Kuwait, Lebanon, Morocco, Palestine, Syria and the UAE on the scale of the natural disaster that hit Serbia, the presidential press office said in a statement.

He also informed them of President Tomislav Nikolic's initiative for holding a donor conference to collect aid for Serbia and Bosnia and Herzegovina, as well as of French President Francois Hollande's wish that the event be hosted by France.

"An international conference is the optimal model of demonstrating the solidarity of all countries of the world, and this should become a regular practice aimed at providing aid to stricken countries," Mrkic told the ambassadors.

He particularly noted the significance of the support given by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, who will call on the UN member states to take part in the donor conference, the statement said.

Mrkic expressed gratitude for the quick and unselfish assistance provided by Arab states to the population in Serbia and for their participation in efforts to deal with the consequences of recent floods.

Speaking on behalf of the group of ambassadors, Palestinian Ambassador to Serbia Mohammed Nabhan said that, as individuals - and on behalf of their respective governments and the group of ambassadors of Arab states - the ambassadors were actively involved from the onset of the disaster and provided aid and support to the Serbian people, adding that they will continue to do the same in the future as much as they can...

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