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Bucharest
May 9, 2021
POLITICS

Romania supports start of negotiations process on Serbia’s EU accession

Serbian Premier Ivica Dacic, present in Bucharest on Friday, talked with Premier Victor Ponta at the Victoria Palace and then met President Traian Basescu.

The Serbian Prime Minister met his Romanian counterpart at the Victoria Palace. At the end of their meeting, Victor Ponta expressed, on behalf of the Romanian government, “full support for the start of the negotiation process on Serbia’s accession at the European Union” and saluted “the Serbian government’s and Premier Dacic’s in particular courage and determination in what concerns the evolution of relations between Belgrade and Pristina and the agreement signed in Brussels.” “It’s Romania’s interest and the interest of the whole region to have stability and coooperation in our region. Romania will always remain a loyal friend of Serbia and, at the same time, we will support all the efforts that the Serbian government is making to normalize relations and to put these regional relations in a constructive direction,” Ponta pointed out.

Ivica Dacic: I understand very well the pressures faced by Romania because of Kosovo
In his turn, the Serbian Prime Minister stated that he understands “very well the pressures and the situation Romania is in for its principled position in what concerns the Kosovo issue.” “Rest assured that Serbia wants the Kosovo issue solved as fast as possible and acceptable solutions found for both sides and for all of us, together, to turn towards the future – and this is the true value of the agreement I signed in Brussels. On the other hand, Romania’s support in what concerns Serbia’s EU accession process will be very important for us. We expect Serbia to receive a date for the start of negotiations. All criteria having to do with domestic politics, dialogue with Pristina and other criteria concerning the internal situation have been met,” the Serbian Premier added. He also stated that his country wants the strengthening of all “economic, cultural and other types of ties” with Romania, which is “third among EU countries in what concerns trade with Serbia.” “And that is why Serbia considers, bearing in mind the very good relations it has with Romania, that there should be no problem with the Romanian minority in Serbia, and with the Serbian minority in Romania,” Ivica Dacic added.
“As early as ten years ago, when I visited Romania, I heard Romanians say that Romania has two friends: the Black Sea and Serbia. We, unfortunately, do not have a sea but on the other hand we have Romania. So we hope that this friendship of ours will be the key to stability in the Balkans,” the Serbian Prime Minister concluded.
“Romanian President Traian Basescu welcomed on Friday, May 31, at the Cotroceni Palace, Serbian Prime Minister Ivica Dacic,” a Presidential Administration communiqué informs. According to the document, during the meeting the Romanian President reiterated Romania’s firm support for Serbia’s European outlook and saluted the signing of the agreement on the normalization of relations between the Republic of Serbia and Kosovo. At the same time, Basescu “congratulated” the Serbian Premier for finding resources for an agreement with Pristina, pointing out that he understands very well “how difficult it is,” however the folding on political realities was necessary. Traian Basescu and Ivica Dacic also talked about the Romanian community in Serbia, pointing out that Romania wants to see the equal application of the standards of protection for national minorities for all ethnic Romanians living in Serbia. In this context, the Head of State expressed Romania’s openness to put at the Serbian authorities’ disposal teachers that can teach the Romanian language in the schools in the region, as well as Romanian-language books. “During the talks on regional issues Basescu stated that the cancelling of the South-East Europe Cooperation Process (SEECP) summit that should have taken place in Ohrid, Republic of Macedonia, on June 1, represents a significant step backwards for the whole region,” the Presidency’s communiqué points out.

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