European Western Balkans

Lunić: It is understandable why Serbia wants KFOR to stay in Kosovo

Photo: Flickr / KFOR Kosovo

SARAJEVO – It is understandable that Serbia wants KFOR to stay in Kosovo, given that the latest report of the OSCE Mission shows that there has been an increase in incidents, said Nikola Lunić, Executive Director of the Council of Strategic Policy in an interview with the Oslobođenje portal.

Speaking about Serbia’s cooperation with NATO, Lunić stated that building interoperability is in the interest of acting in multinational operations, exercises and Serbia’s contribution to the EU’s Common Security and Defense Policy.

“Cooperation in the field of civil protection and emergency situations enables us to gain useful experience, improve structures and raise national and regional capabilities for responding to natural disasters and other emergency situations”, Lunić says.

In addition, he believes that the lack of military cooperation between the countries of the Western Balkans only raises the level of mistrust, which leads to unnecessary political tensions.

Lunić explains that cooperation within the NATO program “Science for Peace” is important for Serbia, where young scientists are engaged through various projects.

“Regardless of the benefits of material donations, Serbia always gets the most when it invests in people and improves their knowledge and abilities because it invests in a sustainable future,” says Lunić.

When asked why Serbia insists that KFOR Mission stays in Kosovo, Lunić stated that this aspiration is understandable, considering that the latest report of the OSCE Mission shows that there has been an increase in incidents that have affected mainly the Serbian community.

“On the other hand, the rhetoric of political elites and tabloid diplomacy do not contribute to the establishment of regional trust, which can result in unwanted incidents”, explains Lunić.

Lunic further states that Serbia cooperates with Bulgaria, but neglects cooperation with Albania.

“Just as Albania could offer Serbia an airspace image from the recently installed AN / TPS-77 3D radar for civilian air traffic surveillance, so Serbia could offer an image from the radar that could be reinstalled on Kopaonik with NATO approval”, Lunić emphasize.

Asked whether the region can expect more from NATO after the change of power in the United States, he stated that NATO exceeds the significance of the presidential elections in this country.

“Regardless of all criticisms of the concept of collective security, as well as initiatives to strengthen European defence, with the election of Biden, we can expect even greater transatlantic unity based on common interests, with an emphasis on multilateralism with interest interventionism”, Lunić told Oslobođenje.

He believes that the region should build a vision of compatibility of defence capabilities through the construction of regional emergency response forces.

“If it wants to maintain the economically unprofitable concept of military neutrality, Serbia would have to work on building reliable partnerships, especially in the region. And especially with NATO “, concludes Lunić and adds that he believes that compulsory military service in Serbia will not be reintroduced soon, but manipulation on this topic will continue, especially in the pre-election process.

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