Daily Survey

Belgrade, May 30, 2012

SERBIA – EU

NIKOLIC WITH DEGERT: I WILL NOT HINDER FORMING OF GOVERNMENT

BELGRADE, May 29 (Tanjug) –Serbian president-elect Tomislav Nikolic said Tuesday he will not hinder the forming of the government and urged the parties to speed things up as the country is faced with a very difficult economic situation.Addressing the press after his talks with Head of the EU Delegation to Serbia Vincent Degert, Nikolic said that if the parties which were already in talks to form the government fail to reach agreement by Monday, he will start talks with parties according to the number of seats they hold in the parliament.During our talks, I informed Degert that I want to cooperate with the parliament on the setting up of the government, and that I also want to cooperate with the government itself once it has been formed, Nikolic said.Asked what his cooperation with Boris Tadic would look like if the DS leader became prime minister, Nikolic said that Tadic would have the right to think about his own party, whereas he, as the president of Serbia, has to ignore things such as who the prime minister is or which party he cames from."I will simply have to cooperate with him," Nikolic said.He also said that as a president, he would not stand opposed to the Democratic Party."That may be hard to achieve, but I have set my mind on that. You have seen for yourself that Tadic began to think that way too. This was not possible before, and this is why I say that a new era has begun in Serbia," Nikolic underlined.But you have to ask Tadic, if he becomes PM, whether he sees our future cooperation in the same way as I, he added.Commenting on the relations with neighbouring countries, Nikolic said that some had tried to harm his relations with Croatia, which he said is not possible."I cannot answer for what I said 15-20 years ago. If this is how things were done, no one would be able to engage in politics. I can answer (only) for what I have done since I was elected as president of the Republic," Nikolic said.He added that he would invite Croatian President Ivo Josipovic to attend his inauguration in Belgrade, noting that he "would never do anything to harm the relations between the two countries and their peoples."

NIKOLIC & DAVENPORT DISCUSS EU INTEGRATION

BELGRADE, May 30 (Tanjug) –British Ambassador Michael Davenport relayed Prime Minister David Cameron's congratulations to Serbia's president-elect Tomislav Nikolic, and discussed with him Serbia's EU integration and the future of the Belgrade-Pristina dialogue, Tanjug learned from the British Embassy on Tuesday.Davenport had already congratulated Nikolic on his election on behalf of the Queen of England, commending his dedication to Serbia's EU path.Davenport also encouraged Belgrade to continue working to strengthen relations in the region and said Great Britain was hopeful that together with Serbia's new president and future government, it would continue to work on building candidate status for EU membership and conducting the necessary reforms on Serbia's path toward the EU.

PIA AHRENKILDE-HANSEN WELCOME AN EARLY VISIT BY PRESIDENT NIKOLIC

BELGRADE, May 29 (Tanjug) –President-elect Tomislav Nikolic announced Tuesday that he will visit Brušels on June 14, where he will meet with European Council President Herman Van Rompuy and EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Catherine Ashton.The European Union is preparing for the visit and hopes for a rapid formation of the government in Serbia and the continuation of dialogue between Belgrade and Pristina, it was stated in Brušels.The European Commišion would welcome an early visit of newly elected Serbian President Tomislav Nikolic to Brušels, that would show that Serbia has an uncanged commitment to the European Union, a spokeswoman for the commišion said Tuesday."We have repeatedly underlined the importance of a continued Serbian commitment to Serbia's EU path and therefore of course we would and we will welcome an early visit to Brušels by President Nikolic, and we are at the moment looking into the agenda," Pia Ahrenkilde-Hansen said during a regular preš briefing.The exact date of the visit has not yet been set, she said.Hansen declined to comment Nikolic's recent statement to the German newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung on Vukovar and the return of Croats to the town, noting only that the EU has made it clear earlier that it expects a pro-European orientation from the new Serbian government.Asked by the preš about plans for the continuation of dialogue between Belgrade and Pristina, Ashton's spokeswoman Maja Kocijancic said that Brušels hopes that this dialogue will be resumed as soon as pošible after the government in Belgrade is formed.A lot more needs to be done on the tecnical aspects of the dialogue and the implementation of agreements reaced so far, Kocijancic said.

SERBIA

DEJANOVIC: GOVERNMENT TO BE FORMED SOON, POSSIBLY IN JUNE

BELGRADE, May 30 (Tanjug) –Serbian parliament speaker Slavica Djukic Dejanovic expects that a new government will be formed soon and does not rule out June as the possible deadline. Dejanovic, who is replacing the president of Serbia until Nikolic takes the oath of office on Thursday, told reporters in the parliament building that the talks about the future government have gained momentum."New agreements are made by the hour and I want to believe that we are on a good track and that the government will be set up relatively soon, possibly in June," said Dejanovic. The parliament's Collegium held its last session to create the scenario for the two events the parliament has scheduled for May 31 - the inaugural session and a special session at which the newly elected president will be sworn in.

DEJANOVIC: PLAN FOR THURSDAY MEETING SET DOWN

BELGRADE, May 30 (Tanjug) –The current Serbian parliament Collegium met for the last time on Wednesday and set down the plan for the constitutive session of the new parliament on Thursday, but also for a special session soon after, where president elect Tomislav Nikolic will take the presidential oath, Parliament Speaker Slavica Djukic-Dejanovic has said.The session where Nikolic will take the presidential oath will be special, the atmosphere formal, and once Nikolic takes the oath, his term as president will begin, Djukic-Dejanovic told reporters at the parliament building after the meeting of the Collegium.She stated she had called the constitutive session, set for 10 a.m. CET, after sceduling the one where Nikolic will take the oath, because he did not wish to take the oath before the old parliament.The Collegium held its last meeting on Wednesday, but also agreed on how things would be done in the future, she noted.Serbian Parliament Speaker Slavica Djukic-Dejanovic stated that the parliamentary majority will decide on the new speaker, and refused to reveal whether she would continue to cair the body.I may have had some other ambitions, but if the majority decides to keep me that is the way it is going to be, Djukic-Dejanovic said.Addressing reporters after the end of a session of the Collegium in the House of the National Assembly, she underlined that she has no knowledge whether Thursday's inaugural session will elect new parliamentary heads.The parliament speaker added that mandates will be verified on Thursday, whic means that the government is entering a period of technical operation, while the mandates of the old legislature are turning void.

EXHIBIT IN PARIS ORGANIZED BY MINISTRY OF FA, MINISTRY OF CULTURE...

PARIS, NOVI SAD, May 29 (Tanjug) –An exhibit of paintings by Milan Konjovic (1898-1993) entitled "Return to Paris" opened Monday at the Serbian Cultural Center in the French capital, in celebration of 100 years of the artist's work, the Vojvodina government wrote on its website.The exhibit was opened by Vojvodina Prime Minister Bojan Pajtic, who said there was no better way to promote Vojvodina and Serbia than presenting Konjovic's work in Paris."Our great painter invested more than eight decades of energy and work into 6,000 pieces. He was connected to Paris on one side and Vojvodina on the other. He is the link between Paris and Vojvodina," said Pajtic.Art critic Sava Stepanov said it was in Paris that "Konjovic became Konjovic," i.e. it was in the French capital that he arrived at his expressionism, his own characteristic expression that made him one of the most important Serbian artists of the 20th century.The exhibit, which will run through June 30, encompasses a selection of 25 paintings from the Milan Konjovic Gallery in Sombor, which the artist bestowed on his home town in 1966.The exhibit was organized by Ministry of Culture, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the City of Sombor and the Provincial Secretariat of Culture.

SERBIA – REGION

NIKOLIC: BETTER RELATIONS WITH MONTENEGRO

PODGORICA, May 29 (Tanjug) –President-elect Nikolic said that Montenegro's independence is a fait accompli, adding that he wants the two states to have a much better relationship in the future than is the case now.He said that Serbs and Montenegrins have a lot in common.I recognize Montenegro as a state, but I do not recognize the difference between the Serbs and Montenegrins, because there is not any, Nikolic told Television of Montenegro. Nikolic reiterated that he would never recognize Kosovo's independence, even at the cost of giving up the European path of Serbia.Asked whether there was a situation where he could recognize the independence of Kosovo, Nikolic responded negatively.Nikolic said noone has put the recognition of Kosovo as a condition for Serbia's progress in European integration.It is a hypothetical question whether someone will put that condition or not, but I an not one of those who would accept European integration and give up Kosovo and Metohija, he said.

KRIVOKAPIC HAS TOPICS FOR TALKS WITH NIKOLIC

PODGORICA, May 30 (Tanjug) –Speaker of the Montenegrin Parliament and leader of the Social Democratic Party (SDP) Ranko Krivokapic has said he now has something to talk about with Tomislav Nikolic as Serbian president, unlike the time when Nikolic was just the leader of the Serbian Progressive Party (SNS).Krivokapic told the Vijesti daily from Podgorica that he had nothing to talk about with Nikolic when the latter visited Podgorica and met with Democratic Party of Socialists (DPS) head Milo Djukanovic."No, I had nothing to discuss with the SNS president, but I have plenty to talk about with the Serbian president. He is no longer the SNS president, and any Serbian president elected by the people will have my full respect," said Krivokapic, whose party is the smaller member of the government coalition.No one from the SDP met with Nikolic when he visited Montenegro last November, even though he was a guest of the DPS, the larger member of the government coalition.