NATO has not spoken against Serbia’s participation in military exercises with Russia, while the EU is not a military block and should mind its own business.
“One military exercise with Russia would probably fall under statistical error, because exercise with that country are absolutely a minority compared to all the others,” Dacic said, when asked “what, if any influence” Serbia’s participation in the upcoming Slavic Brotherhood 2015 could have.
Dacic also remarked that Serbia took part many times in military exercise with western countries.
“We have the right to cooperate with whomever we want, that’s our autonomous right. Serbia is an independent country,” said he, and added it was “on the road toward the EU – while everyone knows we have much better military cooperation with western countries than with Russia.”
Dacic said that Serbia and NATO agreed to develop cooperation, and stressed he “did not hear a single word against our participation in military exercises with Russia in NATO’s HQ.”
“So who are these others to lecture us? The European Union is not a military block. It should mind its own business,” said the Serbian minister, and added that “we have our national interests and will apply all means to protect them.”
“We must fight so that Kosovo does not join UNESCO, and that means ministers of foreign affairs of those countries that have not recognized Kosovo must be talked with. We cannot quarrel with them,” said Dacic.
He added that “quarreling with our traditional friends in order to join the EU or anything else would represent political suicide for us.”
“And we are not a suicidal people, but one that wants to have good relations with everyone,” concluded Dacic.