Croatia - Serbia
Pupovac says Nikolic's statements harmful and intolerable
Serbian President Tomislav Nikolic's statements concerning Vukovar and Srebrenica are not only harmful, but also intolerable and we hope that upon the formation of Serbia's new government control would be established over political processes, the head of the Croatian parliament's committee on foreign affairs, Milorad Pupovac, said in Zagreb on Tuesday.
Nikolic, who was elected president last month, drew condemnation after his recent interview with the German newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung in which he said that the Greater Serbia project was his unrealised dream and that today he respected Croatia's internationally recognised borders, but that Croats had no business returning to Vukovar because it had been a Serb town.
In another interview aired by the Montenegrin public broadcaster last Thursday, Nikolic tried to contest the fact that Bosnian Serb forces in July 1995 committed genocide against more than 8,000 Bosnian Muslim men and boys in Srebrenica. "There was no genocide in Srebrenica," Nikolic said. The right-wing politician conceded that "grave war crimes were committed by some Serbs, who should be found, prosecuted and punished."
"We are ready to resume cooperation, but we wish to clearly state that we will not tolerate disrespect for the feelings of war victims and for our dedication to the values we want to spread in the region," Pupovac said during talks with Luxembourg Parliament Speaker Laurent Mosar.
Relations in the region were one of the topics of the meeting held in the Croatian parliament.
Pupovac said Croatia was committed to continuing its cooperation with Belgrade, but voiced concern at Nikolic's recent statements which he said did not contribute to the further promotion of bilateral relations.
Pupovac thanked Mosar, who is on an official visit to Croatia, for Luxembourg's financial assistance, notably in demining projects.
Mosar stressed Croatia could be certain that its Treaty of Accession with the European Union would be ratified by the Luxembourg parliament by year's end. We are exceptionally satisfied with the level of adjustment of your national legislation to that of the EU and certain that you will bring the ratification process to completion by 1 July 2013 and be fully ready to enter the bloc, Mosar said.