PODGORICA – The US Senate delegation, led by Republican Senator John McCain, visits Montenegro Tuesday, CDM reports.
The US delegation will meet top Montenegrin officials.
McCain has recently come into the focus of interest of Montenegrin public because he strongly supports Montenegro’s accession to NATO. Speaking in the US Senate, he has recently said that Montenegro is under significant pressure and even attack from Russia and pointed out that the US must urgently confirm Montenegro’s membership in NATO.
“The Russians tried a coup in Montenegro. They wanted to kill the prime minister and overthrow the government in order to keep Montenegro from becoming a part of NATO,” McCain said pointing out that the US should send clear message to Russia that it won’t have veto power over NATO enlargement decisions.
He added that Montenegro’s membership in the alliance would improve the stability in the region, where, as he said, there was great instability.
“Stopping Montenegro’s NATO candidacy would represent a significant shift in U.S. policy and signify an acquiescence to Moscow’s growing influence in the Balkans, producing a ripple effect throughout the region that would have profound ramifications on our shared security interests,” he said.
McCain added that the United States had benefited tremendously from peace and stability in Europe, therefore it should stand with Montenegro or risk undermining the vision of a Europe that is whole, free, and at peace.
“If we keep turning this down after 25 of the 28 governments in NATO have voted in favour of Montenegro’s accession to NATO, we would be sending a terrible, terrible message,” McCain said.
The Senate approved the protocol on Montenegro’s entry into NATO.
Last year, McCain met then prime minister and DPS president, Milo Djukanovic, in Washington. Then he said that the Senate was pleased that Montenegro was working on four key areas to get NATO invitation – the rule of law, security services reform, military reforms and increasing public support.