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DAILY SURVEY 01.11.2017.
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SERBIA

DACIC: SURINAME WITHDRAWS RECOGNITION OF KOSOVO'S INDEPENDENCE

BELGRADE, 31 October 2017 (Beta) - Suriname's government has notified Serbia of a decision to withdraw the earlier recognition of Kosovo's unilaterally proclaimed independence, Serbian Foreign Minsiter Ivica Dacic said on Oct. 31, adding that "it's not over yet." Dacic explained at a press conference that his Surinamese counterpart, Yldiz Pollack-Beighle, had shared the news with him the previous evening, while an official note arrived overnight. "The Surinamese foreign minister informed me last evening, and a note was published overnight, that the government of Suriname had decided to withdraw its decision to recognize Kosovo," Minister Dacic announced. "This is of historic importance for Serbia, this reversible process, replacing the endless talk about the recognition of Kosovo," Dacic said, adding that Belgrade needed to be committed to the end. Suriname's decision is not a precedent, but such decisions are not frequent either. The republic recognized Kosovo's independence on June 8, 2016. Dacic said he was traveling to attend the UNESCO General Assembly on Nov. 1, recalling that Kosovo would not be discussed at the conference, and that the Security Council would have a session on Kosovo next week.

DACIC MEETS WITH ITALIAN SENATORS TO DISCUSS COOPERATION BOOSTS

BELGRADE, 31 October 2017 (Beta) - Serbian Foreign Minister Ivica Dacic met in Belgrade, on Oct. 31, with the co-chair of the Italian Senate's Committee on Foreign Affairs, Paolo Corsini, and a member of the Committee, Senator Vito Petrocelli, to discuss the development of bilateral cooperation. Minister Dacic said he was pleased with the excellent bilateral ties between Serbia and Italy, and with the level of parliamentary cooperation that had assumed the character of a strategic partnership, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs reported. The Serbian foreign minister also voiced thanks for the Italian parliamentary support to Serbia in the EU accession process, briefing his guests about the status of the integration and talks with Pristina. Minister Dacic also spoke about the historical and religious aspects of Kosovo and Metohija, explaining the reasons why Serbia would never be able to recognize Kosovo's unilaterally proclaimed independence.

VUCIC MEETS WITH DELEGATION OF ITALIAN SENATORS

BELGRADE, 31 October 2017 (Beta) - Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic met on Oct. 31 with a delegation from the Italian Senate to discuss bilateral relations and Serbia's accession to the European Union. The president thanked the members of the Committee on Foreign Affairs, Paolo Corsini and Vito Petrocelli, for Italy's strong support to Serbia on the country's path to the Union, and its active role in the Berlin Process, instrumental in keeping regional peace and providing economic boosts to the Western Balkans, the Office of the Serbian President reported. The two senators said that Italy appreciated the efforts Serbia and President Vucic had invested in regional stability, the Office went on to say in a press release. The president and the two senators agreed that joint projects had paved the way to great progress in fighting corruption and organized crime, which also helped Serbia meet the requirements of Chapter 23. Vucic said that the Serbian and Italian parliaments had played an important role in building tight bilateral ties and good political and economic cooperation.

VUCIC THANKS CUBAN AMBASSADOR FOR PROMOTION OF BILATERAL TIES

BELGRADE, 31 October 2017 (Beta) - In a farewell meeting with Cuban Ambassador to Serbia Adela Mayra Ruiz Garcia on Oct. 31, President Aleksandar Vucic thanked her for good cooperation and everything she had done during her mandate in Belgrade to promote bilateral relations using her diplomatic experience and personal effort. Vucic said he was happy to soon visit Cuba at the invitation of Cuban President Raul Castro, noting that good political relations between the two countries should be a basis for developing economic cooperation, identifying agriculture, medicine and pharmaceutical industry as fields of great potential for cooperation, according to a press release from Vucic's office. Vucic also said that Serbia, a country that cherished its independence, felt great friendship and respect for Cuba and honored the freedom-loving feeling of the Cuban nation. The Cuban ambassador said that Vucic's visit would give a strong impetus to bilateral relations and development of economic cooperation. She said that Cuba would always back Serbia regarding Kosovo and Metohija as Havana honored international law.

CORSINI PRAISES SERBIA'S REFORMS, MODERNIZATION

BELGRADE, 31 October 2017 (Beta) - Serbian Prime Minister Ana Brnabic met on Oct. 31 with the co-chair of the Italian Senate's Committee on Foreign Affairs, Paolo Corsini, who praised Serbia's reforms and modernization, underlining that it was the safest way for the country to join the European Union. "Italy's parliament and government will prove all the assistance Serbia might need in the process," Corsini was quoted as saying by the Office of the Serbian PM. The prime minister thanked Corsini for Italy's support to regional dialogue and the stability of the Western Balkans, which the country demonstrated through an active role in the Berlin Process. Brnabic said that Italy was Serbia's largest investor and second-largest trade partner, and that there was room to expand bilateral trade. Corsini had previously met with members of the peer committee in the Serbian parliament, saying that Serbia's membership of the EU might improve European-Russian relations as well.

GOJKOVIC MEETS IRANIAN PARLIAMENTARY DELEGATION

BELGRADE, 31 October 2017 (Beta) - Parliament Speaker Maja Gojkovic met in Belgrade on Oct. 31 with a delegation of the Iranian parliament's friendship group with Serbia to discuss ways to improve bilateral cooperation. Gojkovic assessed bilateral ties as good and friendly, advocating further development of relations through the cooperation of working bodies and friendship groups in the parliaments, according to a statement from Gojkovic's office. She thanked Iran for honoring international law and Serbia's territorial integrity, that is, for Iran's non-recognition of Kosovo's independence. Friendship Group with Serbia head Parvaneh Salahshouri stressed the importance of further development of bilateral ties, saying she expected that more frequent meetings at parliamentary level would contribute to further development of cooperation in the fields of economy, trade, education and culture, the statement said.

SERBIAN DEFENSE MINISTER DISCUSSES COOPERATION WITH EU OFFICIAL

BELGRADE, 31 October 2017 (Beta) - Serbian Defense Minister Aleksandar Vulin met in Belgrade, on Oct. 31, with Deputy Secretary General for Common Security and Defence Policy and Crisis Response at the European External Action Service (EEAS) Pedro Serrano to discuss cooperation in addressing migration and terrorism. The Ministry of Defense quoted Serrano as underlining Serbia's constructive role in handling the migrant crisis, placing special emphasis on the importance of exchanging relevant intelligence. The EU official praised the role of the Serbian ministry and army in the EU crisis-management operations, having also noted the progress Serbia had made in collaboration with the European Defense Agency. Minister Vulin underscored that Serbia was "fully committed to its neutral military status," and that Serbia's foreign policy goals included membership of the EU, the protection of territorial integrity and sovereignty and regional cooperation. The ministry's priorities in cooperating with the EU were to join the EU crisis-management operations, prepare to join the EU Battlegroup concept, work with the European Defense Agency and develop human resources.

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