Sochi – Russian President Vladimir Putin said Thursday that Moscow will continue to supply Serbia with natural gas on favorable terms to its allies.
President Putin expressed confidence that the new contract for gas supply to Serbia will be swiftly signed to replace the current contract, which expires at the end of the year.
“We will definitely find a solution that will be accepted by our Serbian friends,” Putin said at the beginning of a meeting at Sochi’s Black Sea residence, visiting Serbian President Alexander Vucci.
Putin also said Russia would continue to firmly support Serbia in recent tensions with Kosovo.
“We support your position on the Kosovo reconciliation, and I hope the situation will ultimately develop in a way that is in line with the interests of all who live in the area,” he said.
Kosovo was a Serbian state from 1998 to 1999 until the rebellion by Albanian rebels triggered a bloody crackdown on Serbs. As a result, NATO has begun a 78-day bombing campaign to expel Serbian troops from Kosovo. More than 10,000 people have died in the war. Kosovo declared independence in 2008, but Serbia is unaware of it. The relationship between Kosovo and Serbia remains tense despite the dialogue promoted by the European Union over the last decade to normalize them.
Vucci welcomed the close relationship between Serbia and Russia, noting that the level of defense cooperation was particularly high.
Serbia officially seeks EU accession, but refuses to align its foreign policy with the block of 27 countries and instead strengthens its alliance with Russia and China.
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Putin says Russia offers Serbia a good gas deal
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