In the late 90s NATO attacked Serbia from the air in order to halt the ethnic cleansing of Albanians in Kosovo, a Serbian territory that wanted its independence. At the time, Russia, fresh off the fall of the Soviet Union, was in no position to counter the powerful alliance, even though Serbia was a traditional Orthodox Christian ally.
The NATO bombing was heavily criticized for widespread infrastructure and environmental damage and civilian casualties.
Moscow has never forgotten and voiced its resurgent anger last week through the Russian state-owned press.
“And for a start, the United States should apologize to those it bombed, pay out compensation to those killed and wounded and to those whose health was damaged because of shells loaded with depleted uranium. And only when this is done, when the proper groundwork has been laid, can it call on others to move forward,” she wrote on her Facebook account, commenting on the statement by outgoing US Ambassador to Serbia, Kyle Scott, who said that the Serbs should look at NATO’s bombings in 1999 from a “broader perspective,” declared Maria Zakharova on Sunday, the spokeswoman for the Russian Foreign Ministry, reported Russian state news agency TASS.
The renewed publicity effort seems to be a push to prevent Serbia’s entry into the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, or NATO, and to prevent an outcome of recent suggestions by Soros-backed efforts to seal a land swap between Serbia and Kosovo that would not be in Moscow’s best interests.
“Yes, we hear that Serbia has a choice and shortly after this we hear a statement by another official who speaks about a “Euro-Atlantic prospect” for Serbia and they [the West] don’t believe at all that Serbia could have the freedom of choice, namely in orienting itself towards Russia. For a Euro-Atlantic seizure of this region Serbia is a stumbling block and everything what they have done to Serbia, failed to produce the designed effect: Serbia and the Serbian people have not gone down on their knees, the country is seeing renovation and its potential is strengthening. Why do you think they are so insisting that Serbia should join NATO? That’s because Serbia’s accession to NATO would justify all atrocities that NATO had committed here,” said Russian Ambassador to Serbia Alexander Botsan-Kharchenko in an interview with Serbian press also on Sunday.
When asked to comment on Germany’s position, which opposes a possible split of Kosovo and Metohija, warning that this would “create a precedent,” the diplomat noted that Russia did not back this idea or any other option, wrote TASS.
“But we cannot understand the statement that Kosovo’s split would set a precedent in Europe. The former Yugoslavia was divided in all possible ways. And then it turns out that neither the split of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia nor the State Union of Serbia and Montenegro was a precedent, but Kosovo’s split would be a precedent. These are very strange statements,” he said.
“We are seeking to become number one in terms of investments in Serbia, and this also concerns trade turnover. Our goal is to bring this number from $3.5 bln to $4 bln per year,” he added.
Tsarizm has written previously about the Soros effort to engineer a land swap in the Balkans.
- Former Serbian MFA: Rama, Vučić, and Thaçi Work on Kosovo–Serbia Land Swap with Blair, Soros, and Lewandowski
- The Authoritarian Push For Territorial Exchange In Balkans Is Dangerous And Irresponsible