A delegation of the Serbian opposition Party of Freedom and Justice (SSP), which is paying a visit to the US, met Tuesday at the State Department with Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs Karen Donfried and US Special Representative to the Western Balkans Gabriel Escobar, said the SSP.
The delegation comprises SSP leader Dragan Djilas and deputy leaders Borko Stefanovic and Marinika Tepic.
Djilas informed the American officials about his party’s position that Serbia needs to align its foreign policy with that of the European Union (EU), but assessed that Europe’s attitude towards Serbia is wrong, as well the threats of freezing the European integration process that are coming from Brussels, adding that this will not help increase support for the EU in Serbia or contribute to our citizens’ better living conditions, said the SSP.
“Political and economic relations with the United States are of priority importance for Serbia’s future, even though we do not always agree on all issues. However, I have no dilemma that, historically, economically and security-wise, Serbia belongs to Europe and to the democratic world. We are aware that this is the time when we have to make a choice and that is why Serbia must not make a mistake by which it will marginalize itself and exclude itself from courses of modern civilization,” said Djilas.
Borko Stefanovic told the American officials that, as soon as the Serbian Government is formed, as the chairman of the Serbian Parliament Foreign Affairs Committee he will put on the Committee agenda the issue of aligning Serbia’s foreign policy with the EU and added that “peace, renunciation of the use of force, honoring of international law and dialogue on all outstanding issues are the postulates that the SSP policy is based on.”
Marinika Tepic talked about human rights violations, media freedom and crime and corruption, and presented the party’s proposal for the formation of a regional center for the fight against organized crime in Belgrade which she said was necessary because “crime does not recognize national borders, so an efficient fight against it requires a regional approach and cooperation.”