Belgrade, July 05, 2012
NIKOLIC: SERBIA IS FACTOR OF REGIONAL STABILITY
BELGRADE, July 04 (Tanjug) - Serbian President Tomislav Nikolic rewarded the officers who successfully passed a special general staff training with the officer's sabers on Wednesday, and said that Serbia actively contributes to regional security and stability by cooperating with the international community and by respecting the international law.
Nikolic pointed out during the ceremony held at the parliament building that Serbia and its armed forces are best promoted through cooperation with other armies in establishing peace and fighting against terrorism.
"Serbia's integration into European trends creates an opportunity to make progress in all fields, and members of the Serbian Army have a chance to show their quality at the international plan," Nikolic said, and asked the officers to follow the glorious military tradition.
Members of the neighboring armies also pass trainings in Serbia, which is another proof of the quality of Serbian military education and the leading position of the country's Military Academy's in this region.
According to Nikolic, by developing its military education, Serbia strives to prepare the officers to meet their tasks and conduct missions in both Serbia and abroad.
"Serbia is ready to participate in joint solving of international problems," said Nikolic, and wished the officers to build their career in peace.
STEFANOVIC, REEKER ON BELGRADE-PRISTINA DIALOGUE
BELGRADE, July 04 (Tanjug) - Head of the Belgrade team in the dialogue with Pristina Borislav Stefanovic and U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Reeker Philip Reeker agreed Wednesday that it is necessary to continue the dialogue and implement the agreements achieved so far.
Reeker arrived in Serbia on Tuesday.
"Today's meeting with Reeker was very constructive, we exchanged views on the continuation of the dialogue with Pristina. We agreed on the necessity of continuation and implementation of the agreements achieved so far," Stefanovic said in a telephone statement for Tanjug.
Once again he pointed out that all reached agreements are public.
According to Stefanovic, Reeker expressed expectation that the Belgrade Pristina dialogue will continue and that agreements will be implemented.
"We agreed that it is posssible to raise the dialogue to a political level, that is the level of the very negotiators, with the aim of resolving more difficult issues and implementing more easily the agreements achieved with Pristina," Stefanovic said.
Reeker, whose visit to Belgrade is a precursor to the visit of Assistant U.S. Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs Philip Gordon on July 89, Tuesday met with the leaders of the Serbian Progressive Party, Socialist Party of Serbia, United Regions of Serbia and Liberal Democratic Party.
He also briefly met with Serbian President Tomislav Nikolic.
According to the Belgrade electronic media, the U.S. official should Wednesday confer with Democratic Party leader Boris Tadic.
RICKER ENDS HIS VISIT TO SERBIA
BELGRADE, July 05 (Tanjug) - U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Philip Ricker completes his official visit to Serbia on Thursday, during which he met with some of the country's top officials.
Ricker conferred with head of Belgrade's negotiating team in the dialogue with Pristina Borislav Stefanovic on Wednesday.
Stefanovic and the U.S. official agreed that the dialogue needs to continue and that the agreements reached so far need to be implemented.
The Wednesday meeting with Ricker was very constructive, we exchanged our views of the continuation of the dialogue with Pristina, Stefanovic said in a telephone statement for Tanjug, adding that they agreed that the dialogue needs to continue and that the agreements reached so far need to be implemented.
On Tuesday, the U.S. high official met with the leaders of the Serbian Progressive Party, Socialist Party of Serbia, United Regions of Serbia and Liberal Democratic Party.
He also met with Serbian President Tomislav Nikolic on Tuesday. According to Nikolic, they agreed that Serbia would cooperate with the U.S. and that the Department of State is willing to cooperate with any government appointed by the Serbian parliament.
Ricker is visiting Belgrade ahead of the visit of U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs Phillip Gordon who should be staying in Serbia July 89.
KOSOVO AND METOHIJA
EU: KOSOVO REMAINS EU PRIORITY
BRUSSELS, July 04 (Tanjug) - The European Union (EU) said Wednesday that Kosovo would remain one of its priorities and that it had a clear European perspective just like the whole of the Western Balkan region.
Asked whether the decision by the International Steering Group for Kosovo (ISG) to end the supervised independence of Kosovo in September would affect the role and mandate of the EU mission in Kosovo, EU High Representative Catherine Ashton's Spokesperson Maja Kocijancic said that continued advancement of the rule of law in Kosovo would still be one of the key roles of EULEX.
Kocijancic told a press conference that the EU would remain committed to providing assistance and support and making recommendations in Kosovo, particularly through its High Representative and his office in Pristina and the EULEX mission.
The rule of law is a priority for EULEX, under a mandate supported by all 27 EU member states and the relevant local laws, said Kocijancic.
Asked whether the ISG decision meant that EULEX mandate would be mentioned in Kosovo's Constitution, Kocijancic answered that the legal framework for the mission would be in line with the Kosovo Constitution and that it would be supported by it.
At a meeting in Vienna on Tuesday, the ISG decided to end the supervised independence of Kosovo, announced full sovereignty for Kosovo as of fall 2012, and commended the government in Pristina for its intention to deepen its "engagement with the Serb community in the North."
The ISG decided to take the final steps towards ending the supervised independence of Kosovo, and closing the International Civilian Office, reads the communiqué of the meeting in Vienna, adding that the final decision in relation to that is expected at a meeting scheduled for September.
YAGLAND: NO RECOGNITION OF KOSOVO IN COE
BELGRADE, July 05 (Tanjug) - Secretary General of the Council of Europe (CoE) Thorbjorn Jagland stated that a majority of CoE members recognised Kosovo Metohija but that membership was not discussed yet.
What is important for us is for the joint programmes with the EU in Kosovo to continue, because these cover the protection of cultural heritage and Serbian Orthodox churches, Jagland said in an interview for the Belgradebased daily Novosti, adding that the programmes are important in building mutual trust.
We act in keeping with Resolution 1244 of the UN Security Council, and now Belgrade and Pristina also have an agreement on regional cooperation, Jagland said and added that the decision regarding the matter has not been adopted yet, but the general approach here is that pragmatic solutions need to be found.
Commenting on the fact that Albanian Prime Minister Sali Berisha recently accused Rapporteur Dick Marty of plagiarism concerning the report on human organ trafficking, which constitutes an accusation against the entire Parliamentary Assembly, Jagland said that the report exists and that the investigation is being conducted on the basis of it.
The only stand I have on this issue is that the investigation needs to continue, and the only way to carry out the investigation is under the EU auspices and EULEX, Jagland said and underscored that he does not see another method that could be implemented here.
He noted that he followed the statements made by Serbian President Tomislav Nikolic as regards Serbia's European path.
I realised that he would continue acting on the same line as the previous president and former government both when it comes to the EU and CoE, Jagland noted and added that this is the reason why he believes the successful cooperation would continue.
The fact that Nikolic served as a member of the Parliamentary Assembly entails that he knows how the CoE functions, and what the obligations and the benefits of the membership are, Jagland said and added that this is very positive for the relations.