"Serbia could reconcile EU and Russia"

"Serbia could reconcile EU and Russia"

BELGRADE -- Serbia's OSCE chairmanship next year will be "a great opportunity to take on a role and mediate in negotiations in order to smooth EU-Russia relations."

"Serbia must use the opportunity so that an easy solution is found, so that NATO would not have to become involved in it," the Belgrade-based daily Danas is quoting Dušan Siđanski, a special adviser to the president of the European Commission, who was in Serbia for the Belgrade Security Forum.

According to the newspaper, he added that it was "a big mistake" when Europe imposed sanctions on Russia - "because they represent sanctions on Europeans themselves, as well."

"Take as an example if we had the kind of relationship where I sell to you, you sell to me, and you're my big partner.. And when I introduce sanctions against you, these sanctions are actually directed against me, as we now see in France and various other countries. For this reason Turkey now enjoys in this situation because instead of Europe, it is exporting to Russia. Other countries also. Argentina probably when it comes to meat, which Russia bought from Poland. These are sanctions against Europeans, while they do not reflect on Americans - which encourage them," added Siđanski, who will be leaving his post of adviser to the EC president in a month.

Asked whether Serbia can expect problems and delays at the road to the EU because it has not joined the sanctions, he said:

"Of course there will be discussions about it, and Serbia should explain that it would have a major problem if it did. Serbia is currently not a member of the EU to have to impose sanctions on Russia, and it seems to me that even three members did not want to do that....

Continue reading on: