Daily Survey

Belgrade, May 21, 2012



BELGRADE, May 21 (Tanjug) The Republic Electoral Commission (RIK) has processed the results of the second round of presidential elections from 99.34 percent of polling places, according to which Tomislav Nikolic, the presidential candidate of the Serbian Progressive Party, has won 49.55 percent of the votes, whereas Boris Tadic, the candidate of the "Choice for a Better Life" coalition, got 47.30 percent.The turnout was 46.37 percent, and 3.15 percent of ballots were invalid, the RIK said.The RIK has 96 hours after the closing of polling stations to release the final results of the election.


BELGRADE, May 21 (Tanjug) The term of the newly-elected President of Serbia, Tomislav Nikolic, will start upon taking the oath of office before the National Assembly, and one of his first duties will be to nominate a person who will be given the mandate to set up the Government.The Republic Electoral Commission (RIK) has 96 hours after polls close to announce the results of the elections in the Official Gazette of the Republic of Serbia, after which the newly-elected head of state will be able to take the oath and start his five-year mandate.Nikolic can also take his oath before the current assembly, as its mandate has still not expired.According to the Constitution of the Republic of Serbia, the mandate of the previous legislature of the National Assembly expires on the day when the terms of office of two thirds of MPs is verified.Nikolic will take the oath at a special sitting of the National Assembly, which, according to the Rules of Procedure, should be convened by the Speaker.The Constitution stipulates that the President proposes to the National Assembly a candidate for the post of prime minister after hearing the opinion of the whips.The President of the Republic shall also represent the Republic of Serbia in the country and abroad, promulgate laws by decrees, propose a candidate for the Prime Minister and holders of positions to the National Assembly, appoint and dismiss the ambassadors of the Republic of Serbia, receive letters of credence and letters of recall of ambassadors, grant amnesties and award honors, command the Army and appoint, promote and relieve officers of the Army of Serbia, and conduct other affairs in accordance with the Constitution.The President of the Republic shall express the state unity of the Republic of Serbia, the Constitution reads.In Sunday's second round of presidential elections, Nikolic, who was the candidate of the Serbian Progressive Party-led coalition, defeated Boris Tadic, the candidate of the "Choice for a Better Life" coalition.


BUJANOVAC, May 19 (Tanjug) Interior Minister Ivica Dacic said on Friday that the attack on the police checkpoint in Dobrosin near Bujanovac (southern Serbia) is a shot at the common life, and called for the reaction of the international community in Kosovo-Metohija."This is a blatant example of the violation of all agreements with the international community related to the administrative line (towards Kosovo-Metohija). I expect the international forces in KiM to react and I have personally insisted on acting together to find traces of evidence that might lead to perpetrators," Dacic said following the attack which took place last night near the administrative line, in the area of Stublin in the municipality of Gnjilane, when the unidentified attackers fired a barrage of bullets at the police checkpoint.No one was injured, although four policemen, two Serbs and two Albanians, were at the checkpoint at the time of the attack, he added.The interior minister recalled how fiercely the international community reacted when members of the Kosovo Police Service (KPS) were arrested because they crossed the administrative line, stressing that he expects the same reaction.Dacic said that the authorities are working hard on finding traces of evidence that could lead to the perpetrators, and noted that it is evident that they "did not just want to fire a shot or two", but rather wanted to kill the police officers who only by sheer chance suffered no injuries."It is obvious that these people are not amateurs, but experienced and trained persons," Dacic said.Moreover, the authorities have a well-grounded doubt that the attack was aimed at destabilizing the security situation in this part of Serbia, he added.This has been the third attack on the checkpoint in Dobrosin since 1999.


BELGRADE, May 20 (Tanjug) Prosecutor for Organized Crime Miljko Radisavljevic has announced that mass arrests for corruption will be made soon, especially for corruption in the field of finance and economic crime and its influence on state bodies."This is our country's biggest problem when it comes to crime and corruption," Radisavljevic said in an interview for Belgrade daily Blic.He pointed out that organized crime in Serbia has reduced to "groups of local type," and added that the security level in the country is extremely high.The prosecutor said that this is mainly due to great coordination of security services and the police, and thanks to the role of the National Security Council."The Council's international authority is of special importance, since it has provided us with more efficient communication with other world organizations dealing with the same issues. The example of (US agency) DEA is one of the most convincing ones," he noted.Asked who makes the top of organized crime and whether there are any clues leading to politicians, Radisavljevic said that "criminal groups by default try to drag public figures into their business.""Assessing what we have obtained, we launched criminal proceedings against one of the most powerful Balkan mafia organizations, and we accused everyone against whom we have evidence," he stressed.There will be additional property seizures, the prosecutor for organized crime said, and added that the property of Serbian criminals in Spain is particularly interesting, since after its confiscation all the power of organized crime will be revealed.


BERLIN, May 20 (Tanjug) The number of Serbian citizens seeking asylum in Germany has more than halved in April, the German Interior Ministry has stated.According to the ministry's website, 148 Serbian citizens requested asylum in April, while there were 308 such requests in March and 399 in February.That puts Serbia at 6th place among the top 10 nations that most often seek asylum in Germany.The federal immigration and refugee service received a total of 3,181 asylum requests in April, which is 11.7 percent less than in March, but 7.5 percent more than in the same period last year, the statement says.There were 15,482 requests from January to April, or 11.6 perecnt more than in the same time last year.Serbian citizens accounted for 1,562 of those requests, making Serbia the 3rd most common country of origin of asylum seekers, behind Afghanistan and Iraq.Germany granted refugee status to 2,745 people between January and April, while 187 received asylum.



BELGRADE, May 20 (Tanjug) Head of the EU Delegation to Serbia Vincent Degert congratulated Tomislav Nikolic, leader of the Serbian Progressive Party (SNS), for his victory in the presidential elections in the country.He also congratulated the Serbian people, adding that the new president would certainly face a number of challenges, but the EU was ready to cooperate with him."I would like to congratulate very much to Mr. Nikolic for his election as the president of Serbia. I would also like to congratulate the citizens for the very democratic and competitive elections that have been taking place these two weekends. This is good news for democracy and stability here in Serbia," Degert told Tanjug.The EU is aware "that there are a number of expectations (coming) from the citizens of Serbia in terms of economic development and well-being, so there are a number of challenges," he said."It will be very important to have soon a good government in place, a stable government, and a stable parliament as well, as these institutions are tackling these challenges," Degert said.He pointed to the reconciliation in the region as one of the key issues to be considered, Degert said.Serbia has been granted the EU candidate status this year, and the EU wants to continue working together with Serbia, with Nikolic and the new government on this path, said the EU ambassador.The challenges include "the rule of law and economic development. These are issues which will need to be tackled soon and we are ready to work with Mr. Nikolic on these achievements," Degert said.


SARAJEVO, May 21 (Tanjug) European Parliament rapporteur for Serbia Jelko Kacin has said that Serbian Progressive Party (SNS) leader Tomislav Nikolic's victory in the second round of the presidential election was no cause for concern and that the SNS had been a part of the pro-European Serbia since 2008.Kacin advised everyone to refrain from vilifying any officials in any country, especially Nikolic. The will of the voters needs to be respected, he stressed.There is no drama, because changes often happen in politics, he stated, according to a report by Anadolu Agency, adding that drama only occurs with those who lose power.Kacin believes the important thing is that Serbia is a parliamentary democracy and that the parliament and government decide everything. The Serbian government is the body that will negotiate with the EU about the country's EU integration and that government will have to prove through action it is capable of getting the start date for the accession talks, and therefore Serbia needs a strong and operational government, he pointed out.Commenting on what the Balkans, and particularly Bosnia-Herzegovina and Kosovo, could expect from Nikolic, Kacin said that remained to be seen.The EU would like it if Nikolic's first stop was Sarajevo and then Banja Luka in terms of Bosnia-Herzegovina, he noted, adding the EU would also welcome Nikolic's efforts to encourage the Serbs in northern Kosovo to strengthen the Serb community in Kosovo, meaning to re-establish communication between the Serbs living north and south of the Ibar river.



PODGORICA, May 20 (Tanjug) Montenegrin Prime Minister Igor Luksic congratulated Tomislav Nikolic on the victory in the Serbian presidential election, and voiced expectation that the two countries will continue to foster good relations.Luksic also expressed expectation that Nikolic will contribute to regional cooperation and realization of all the goals that are in the interest of regional countries."There is no reason to expect anything else and I believe that in the coming weeks and when we learn the final make-up of the new government, we will step up efforts so as to realize joint projects," the Montenegrin prime minister said.Luksic believes that Nikolic will also contribute to that, the media in Podgorica reported.


TIVAT, May 20 (Tanjug) Branko Radujko, CEO of Telekom Serbia and chairman of the managing board of Summit100 Business Leaders of Southeast Europe, said Saturday that at the time of the global economic crisis, big companies in the region needed to join forces if small national economies were to survive.He explained this was the primary purpose of the initiative he was heading.After a meeting between the Summit100 managing board and Montenegrin President Filip Vujanovic, Radujko told Tanjug that Vujanovic had confirmed he would take part in the initiative's second summit set to take place in the central Serbian town of Arandjelovac in October."We can create consortiums for third markets and build a new business culture and system of values - the global crisis has forced us to do this, and by doing this we also contribute to what presidents do - stability and cooperation in the region," said Radujko.He expressed expectation that after receiving the endorsement of the presidents of Serbia, Slovenia, Croatia and Montenegro, the Summit100 would aslo secure the support of the Macedonian and Bosnia-Herzegovina leaders."The main topic at the next summit in Arandjelovac will be continuation of regional partnerships, but we will also focus on agriculture, sharing of knowledge and production of managers, since the region is only now building its business culture and getting modern managers. We will also deal with the role of the media in encouraging regional cooperation between companies and business institutions," said Radujko.Summit100 Business Leaders of Southeast Europe: A New Deal for a New Age, which brought together business leaders from Serbia, Croatia, Slovenia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Macedonia and Montenegro, was first held in Arandjelovac on October 6 and 7, 2011, and the second will also take place in the same town on October 15 and 16 this year.



LONDON, May 20 (Tanjug) The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) released on Friday the forecast according to which Serbia should record economic growth worth 0.1 percent in 2012, while the growth rate would add up to 2.6 percent in 2013.The latest forecast for 2012 was reduced by one percent point relative to the same figure in January, when the financial institution envisaged that the Serbian economy would record GDP growth rate of 1.1 percent in 2012, EBRD posted on its website.EBRD experts also stated that Serbia's GDP increased by 1.6 percent in 2011, which is 0.3 percent points less than compared to the assessment released in January 2012.According to the assessment, South-East European countries should record economic growth worth one or 2.4 percent, the release states.


LONDON, May 20 (Tanjug) At the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) Annual Meeting on Friday, the Serbian delegation requested from this financial institution not to cut back on the financing of projects due to the global economic crisis, Serbian Governor at the EBRD Verica Kalanovic stated for Tanjug.Serbian Deputy Prime Minister said that the Serbian delegation will stick to its platform at the EBRD Annual Meeting taking place on May 18-19, adding that the voting for the new EBRD president is to take place today. "The whole day went by in talks with governors and delegations of other countries, and we have not abandoned our platforms. The first one is that funding of projects by the EBRD should not be cut back on, and the second one is the huge support to our candidate Bozidar Djelic," Kalanovic underlined."Both positions have been met with great attention and approval and what we have heard in the past several hours is that Djelic had an excellent presentation and that EBRD places great trust on the entire delegation," added Kalanovic, who is also Serbian Deputy Prime Minister. Kalanovic noted that EBRD has allocated over half a billion euros in project realization in Serbia in the past two years, including the construction of the Corridor 10, adding that the second part of the funds is directed at the real sector.The EBRD meeting in London focuses on economic crisis and the election of the new EBRD president. EBRD Board of Governors will discuš išues faced by all financial institutions, while the main topic will be financial restructuring of the entire system and a discušion on long-term sources of financing, Kalanovic earlier told Tanjug.



BELGRADE, May 19 (Tanjug) State Secretary for Kosovo-Metohija Oliver Ivanovic said on Friday that the statement of Albanian Prime Minister Sali Berisha, who said that Albanians are more than ever interested in working on national reunification, constitutes a clear message that the idea of a 'greater Albania' has not been extinguished.During a promotion of a joint primer of Albania and Kosovo in Prizren, southern Kosovo, on Friday, Berisha said that Albanians are now interested more than ever before in participating in the project aimed at national reunification through a major European project.The meeting was attended by Kosovo President Atifete Jahjaga and Prime Minister Hasim Taci.In an interview for the International Radio of Serbia, Ivanovic said that every official meeting between Tirana and Pristina is streaked with the political idea of national reunification.The idea is, at least declaratively, unacceptable for entire Europe and the world and at the same time represents serious aspirations concerning a part of the Serbian territory, which is why the event could be met with very severe reactions, not only by Belgrade, Ivanovic said.According to him, nobody in Serbia has anything against mutual cultural cooperation of Albanians because the same books and joint cultural achievements constitute an acceptable and common mode of cooperation, but it is obvious that the allegedly 'cultural' event on Friday reveals its political background, that is, that the spirit of a 'greater Albania' has not been extinguished.


PRISTINA, May 20 (Tanjug) According to the preliminary results stated by the OSCE, 23.58 percent of the voters in Kosovo cast a ballot in the Serbian presidential election on Sunday.All of the OSCE polling stations in Kosovo were closed after the vote completed in order, Head of the OSCE Mission in Kosovo Ambassador Werner Almhofer stated.The OSCE was again able to allow the people in Kosovo with the right to vote in Serbian elections to exercise that right in a peaceful environment during the second round of the Serbian presidential election, just like in the first round and in the parliamentary elections two weeks ago, Almhofer remarked.All the polling stations opened on time and closed at 8 p.m. CET, the OSCE said. There were no technical difficulties during the day, the OSCE pointed out, adding that election materials were being packed and transported to Vranje and Rasku and that the OSCE was doing the work. The Serbian Electoral Commission will count the votes in Vranje and Raska, the OSCE stated.