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17.09.2021.

Lest we forget 9/11 - we stand by the innocents

Dačić i Godfri: Uspešna borba protiv terorizma moguća jedino uz partnerstvo. Komemoracija zrtvama 9/11 u organizaciji KSAP, EWB i Ambasade SAD

  • Predsednik srpskog parlamenta Ivica Dačić i američki ambasador u Beogradu Entoni Godfri ocenili su u Skupštini Srbije da je uspešna borba protiv terorizma moguća jedino uz saradnju i partnerstvo država.

 

Na skupu „Pamtimo i stojimo uz SAD“, povodom 20. godišnjice terorističkih napada na Njujork i Vašington, Godfri je izrazio zahvalnost Srbiji što sarađuje sa SAD i drugim državama u borbi protiv terorizma.

„Terorizmu pristupamo tako što gradimo savezništva i prijateljstva. Naše savezništvo sa Srbijom počiva na istorijskom partnerstvu i zajedničkoj viziji za budućnost“, rekao je Godfri.

Na skupu koji su organizovali Kongres srpsko-američkog prijateljstva i organizacija Ist-vest bridž (East-West Bridge), uz pokroviteljstvo Skupštine Srbije, Godfri je kazao da je Vašington postigao cilj u Avganistanu i da ta zemlja „više ne može da posluži kao baza za napad na SAD“.

„Cenimo današnji iskreni gest gospodina Dačića, Kongresa srpsko-američkog prijateljstva i organizacije Ist-vest bridž. Zaista cenimo solidarnost naših prijatelja i naših domaćina danas, kada se sećamo na gotovo 3.000 žrtava terorističkih napada 11. septembra“, naveo je Godfri.

Dačić: I na Balkanu se regrutuju ekstremisti

Dačić je rekao da su ti napadi pokazali da države sveta treba da budu istrajne u borbi protiv terorizma i ukazao da je Srbija deo globalne zajednice u suprotstavljanju ekstremizmu. „Svet je doživeo velike promene u poslednjih 20 godina. Solidarnost u složenoj borbi protiv terorizma je ono što nas povezuje i što nam daje nadu da ćemo izaći kao pobednici u borbi protiv ovog zla“, kazao je Dačić. Dodao je da je „poznato da je Balkan jedan od regiona u kojima se regrutuju ekstremisti“ za borbe u raznim delovima sveta.

Član Kongresa SAD Džon Mulinar, koji se obratio učesnicima skupa video porukom, rekao je da su napadi 11. septembra ujedinili narode širom sveta u borbi protiv terorizma. On je zahvalio liderima Srbije za podršku u toj borbi i izrazio nadu da će i ubuduće biti skupova u čast sećanja na žrtve poput današnjeg.

Pregovori o Avganistanu – zvezdica u ličnoj karti Srbije

Predsednik organizacije Ist-vest bridž Jovan Kovačić kazao je da teror predstavlja zločin protiv čovečanstva i ukazao da na svakoj državi leži odgovornost za iskorenjivanje terorizma na njenoj teritoriji.

„Svi moramo da radimo na privođenju zlikovaca pravdi, ali treba raditi i mnogo više od toga, radi iskorenjivanja te pošasti“, naveo je Kovačić.

Dačić je zahvalio Kovačiću jer je doprineo da Srbija pre nekoliko godina bude posrednik u pregovorima tadašnje avganistanske vlade i pobunjenika talibana, koji su prošlog meseca silom preuzeli vlast u zemlji. Dačić je nedavno upoznao javnost da su ti pregovori vođeni u Beogradu.

„Naš doprinos i činjenica da o tim pregovorima nijedna informacija nije procurela u javnost, kako su pregovarači tražili, Srbiji je dala još jednu zvezdicu u njenoj ličnoj karti“, kazao je Dačić.

Narodni poslanik Vladimir Marinković, koosnivač Kongresa srpsko-američkog prijateljstva, rekao je da su u prethodnih nekoliko godina ojačane veze Srbije i SAD.

„Zajedno smo i kada otvaramo fabrike i kada se borimo protiv terorizma, ali i kada obeležavamo jedan ovakav tužan događaj“, kazao je Marinković.

Na početku skupa, pastor Nenad Savić je izgovorio molitvu za sve žrtve terorističkih napada 11. septembra.

https://www.facebook.com/jovan.kovacic/videos/400982174922813


19.08.2021.

Think Tank Defends Serbia Hosting Secret Afghan Govt-Taliban Talks

Sasa DragojloBelgradeBIRN August 18, 202116:53

Serbia hosted several behind-closed-doors talks between the Afghan government and the Taliban, all with the approval of the US, EU and UN, said Jovan Kovacic, director of the think tank that organised the negotiations.


Afghanistan expert Michael Semple (L), Karim Khalili, former Vice President of Afghanistan (M) and Ivica Dacic (R), Serbia’s former Foreign Minister, at one of the Belgrade meetings. Photo: Private archive

After Serbia’s former foreign minister Ivica Dacic on Tuesday claimed that Serbia had hosted talks between the now former Afghan government and the Taliban three times in recent years, the director of East-West Bridge think tank – which reportedly organised the negotiations – told BIRN that Dacic’s information was accurate, backing it up with photos from the meetings.

Jovan Kovacic told BIRN that the former Afghan government and the Taliban held three meetings between 2018 and 2019 in Serbia’s capital, Belgrade.

Asked how his organisation got involved, Kovacic said he got a call from a well-known international figure about his idea that Serbia could act as neutral terrain for a meeting of the two sides.

“It was a bit surprising, but our organisation is known for building cooperation and confidence after the conflicts. Also, Serbia has a good position since it is neutral and we all know that the Muslim world is far from unified. In any other country, there would be allegations of different influences,” the director of East-West Bridge told BIRN.

He did not disclose the name of the “well-known international figure” who made the call, only that he is from an EU country.

Kovacic said he was told to contact Michael Semple, an Irish expert who the BBC has named as “one of the West’s most respected experts on Afghanistan”. Semple was a deputy European Union special representative for Afghanistan until the then Afghan government expellled him in 2007 over his “unauthorized activities”.

“I contacted him and then we contacted the Serbian government, which loved the idea. It was a serious task since many negotiatiors had obstacles to surmount, including travel bans. But Serbia did it really professionally,” he said, adding that secrecy is normal in such negotiations, in this case because “it was their first-ever meeting”.

Kovacic denied that the talks were conducted behind the backs of US, the EU or other involved actors, claiming they all gave permission and were involved in the process.

“We did not do anything behind anyone’s back. Everyone who needed to be invited was invited, including the US, EU countries such as Britain, Sweden, Denmark and Norway, and also representatives of UN,” he emphasized.

Asked about the financing of the whole process, he said that everybody shared the costs of travel and stay, and that the Serbian state only provided locations and technical and communications assets.

Karim Khalili, former Vice President of Afghanistan (L), Ivica Dacic (M), Serbia’s former Foreign Minister, and Jovan Kovacic, founder of East West Bridge, at one of the Belgrade meetings. Photo: Private archive

East West Bridge is a Serbian-based think tank whose members are usually people from the world of business, high politics and media in Serbia and the region.

Its website names Serbian Prime Minister Ana Brnabic as one member. It emphasizes its partnership, among others, with the Trilateral Commission, World Economic Forum – Davos, European Business Summit, The National Alliance for Local Economy Development, NALED, and many other organisations.

Its director, Jovan Kovacic, is also the member of the Executive Committee of the Trilateral Commission and president of the Serbian National Group of the Trilateral Commission, a non-governmental organisation founded by David Rockefeller in 1973.

https://balkaninsight.com/2021/08/18/think-tank-defends-serbia-hosting-secret-afghan-govt-taliban-talks/


27.05.2021.

“Integration of the Western Balkans in NATO - Guarantee for Regional Stability”

Ms. Silvia Maretti, of NATO Public Diplomacy Division, opening the Conference:

“Integration of the Western Balkans in NATO as a Guarantee for Regional Stability”

A recent NATO Regional Conference for the Western Balkans noted that the Alliance is so much more than just a military, but also a comprehensive political organization that protects territorial integrity, democratic values, promotes economic development, provides foreign investment stability.

The on-line Conference was held on May 18-19, 2021, sponsored by the NATO Scientific Committee and organized by regional NGOs EuroBalkan, Belgrade, Bulgarian Hub for United Balkans, Sofia, Center for International and Development Studies, Skopje and CIBAL, Sofia.

University professors and distinguished experts in the field of international relations from Serbia, Northern Macedonia, Croatia, Bosnia-Herzegovina and Bulgaria discussed challenges on the road to NATO, regional implications of North Macedonia’s membership in NATO, the role of NATO in improving the individual/human security: challenges and perspectives and integration of the Western Balkans in NATO as a guarantee for regional stability. Invitees from Albania failed to show up.

Opening the Conference, Ms. Silvia Maretti, of NATO Public Diplomacy Division, said the Alliance is facing rapidly changing challenges in the form of new disruptive technologies, climate changes, cybersecurity, pandemics, and terrorism. “There is the need for strengthening of more political alliance – the reaffirmation of the trans-Atlantic bond and the strengthening of US-European relations. Also, it is important to strengthen the resilience of civil society.”

NATO is committed to the integration of the Western Balkans region, for which political dialogue and cooperation is the key. The focus must be on the younger generations, she said.

Speakers stressed the enormous importance of Euro-Atlantic integration for the overall development and stabilization of the region. “The fact is that NATO is an organization that brings together all the richest, most highly developed and democratic countries in the world, whose experience and support are of key importance for the future of the region”, said Prof. Dr. Slavenko Grgurevic, President of EuroBalkan, member of the East-West Bridge International Advisory Board and the organizer and moderator of the Conference.

“NATO is not only a military, but also increasingly a comprehensive political organization that protects territorial integrity, democratic values, promotes economic development, provides foreign investment stability,” he noted.

Grgurevic spoke about the economic, educational and cultural values of the Euro-Atlantic integration and the important role of young people and their mutual and global ties in improving business, educational and cultural opportunities in the region through cooperation with NATO member states.

The proposal to hold the next NATO Regional Conference in Serbia in 2022 to discuss problems and solutions in accordance with the improvement of the social position of all citizens and especially young people in all countries of the region was unanimously endorsed by Conference participants.


20.05.2021.

US-Serbian Trade Relations Recording Steady Growth

2nd panel in a series of monthly panels organized by EWB and SAFC

On May 19th, Anthony Godfrey, the Ambassador of the United States of America to Serbia, praised U.S. -Serbian economic relations as one of the strongest and continually developing aspects of the relations between the two countries.

"Serbia is an exciting market and the United States have proven to be an excellent economic partner," he said, opening the Serbian American Trade and Investment Relations conference organized by East West Bridge (EWB) and the Serbian American Friendship Congress (SAFC) in cooperation with AmCham.

Godfrey added that the meeting served to highlight the volume of trade relations between the two countries and the importance of the United States for the economic future of Serbia.

The President of the American Chamber of Commerce (AmCham) in Serbia, Zoran Petrović, pointed out that the trade relations between Serbia and the USA are improving, especially in the field of services.

He reminded the conference that AmCham is the largest independent, private association whose goal is to improve the business climate in Serbia.

"There are obstacles and we are working on them together, primarily in the rule of law, as well as improving the efficiency of public administration, the judiciary and a series of procedures, in order to improve economic results and attract even more investment by American companies in Serbia, "said Petrović.

The President of the Serbian Chamber of Commerce, Marko Čadež, stressed the great importance of preferential trade relations with the USA for the Serbian economy and the need to adopt laws avoiding double taxation.

"It is also very important that we ensure that our businesspeople, primarily engineers, get faster work permits for the jobs that they are temporarily doing in the United States," Čadež said.

He pointed out that Serbia’s export of high-tech products is on the rise, and that a large part of it goes to the US market.

Member of the Assembly of Serbia and SAFC co-founder Vladimir Marinković said that the United States give great support to the integration and economic progress of the Southeast Europe.

"It is crucial that the United States recognizes that only through the development of the economy and trade relations can the region modernize and progress towards European integration," he said.

Closing the session, EWB President Jovan Kovačić pointed out that this was only the second in a series of monthly panels organized by EWB and SAFC on different topics pertaining to US-Serbian relations and announced future panels on finance, culture, military and judicial cooperation.

 


20.03.2021.

Palmer on Serbia's Visible Progress

From a fireside chat organized by EWB, SAFC & US Embassy, Belgrade

Deputy Assistant Secretary of State and Special Representative of the State Department for the Western Balkans Matthew Palmer assessed that Serbia has made significant progress in recent years, adding that bilateral relations between Serbia and the United States are strong and that there is a clear common vision for the future.

Matthew Palmer took part at a fireside chat conference "The Future of US-Serbian Relations and US Policy towards the Western Balkans", organized by the Congress of Serbian-American Friendship (KSAP) and "East West Bridge" (EWB), talking about Serbia in 1993 when he first visited our country and Serbia today, he pointed out that it is clear that progress has been made.

As he said, during his last visit, he saw more optimistic and positive people, which is completely understandable due to various circumstances in the mid-1990s, such as the war and sanctions, the KSAP and EWB said.

In a conversation with EWB founder Jovan Kovačić, Palmer said that the visible progress that Serbia has experienced in recent years is especially significant, although there is room for progress, and it is clear that optimism is shared by the United States.

"My impression from the last talks with Serbian officials is that fundamentally, bilateral relations between the two countries are strong, but that there is also a clear common vision of the future and the future of Serbia as an EU member, with all areas that qualify it as economically strong states," he said.

The United States supports Serbia's European path

He reiterated that the United States supports Serbia's European path, and speaking about Euroscepticism in the Serbian public, he said that it was not incomprehensible, having in mind that reforms, which in the end prove to be worth the effort, are sometimes difficult.

"The path to EU membership is difficult and often seems endless. However, in practice it has been shown that when a country reaches its goal, it becomes clear to citizens that the benefits far outweigh the difficulties. I expect that this will be the case with Serbia, ie when people see the real benefits of membership, that support for the European path will increase, "Palmer said.

He also pointed out that it is important for the Balkan countries to know that the path of reform is important and always recognized and rewarded.

Speaking about the mini Schengen, Palmer emphasized the importance of regional connections and initiatives that further encourage growth and prosperity.

He reminded of Serbia’s constructive role in regional initiatives such as mini Schengen, but also added that he would like to see the support of the entire region for such initiatives aimed at solidarity and connecting peoples and countries.

Asked to comment on the importance of the DFC for cooperation between Serbia and the United States, Palmer said that the arrival of the American development agency is the best indicator of the good intentions of the United States.

"The arrival of DFC in the Balkans shows that the United States is committed to the development of the Western Balkans, where I would include Greece. DFC in Belgrade works and is open to new business challenges, which is an important opportunity for the entire region and the United States to develop economic cooperation. projects and other important areas that will help the Balkan countries integrate into the West, "he said.

Palmer added that American companies in Serbia have a very positive impression of our country, that they are satisfied with the conditions, quality and creative staff, especially when it comes to scientific and technological activities.

Godfrey: Deepening good relations between Serbia and the United States

The US Ambassador to Serbia, Anthony Godfrey, emphasized the importance of deepening the good relations between the two countries and stated that this cooperation not only contributes to the economic development of Serbia, but also to the United States.

"That has not changed with the arrival of the new administration in the White House, on the contrary, and the administration of President Joseph Biden continues with the same approach," Godfrey said.

The founder of the Congress of Serbian-American Friendship and MP Vladimir Marinkovic said that he was satisfied, as he said, with the now strong friendship between Serbia and the United States, but that there was still room for development.

He added that in addition to economic issues, Serbia also counts on the support of partners from Washington in resolving the Kosovo issue through a constructive dialogue.

EWB founder Jovan Kovačić concluded the conference by saying that this is just the beginning of joint traditional activities that will be held in order to support and understand the same goals of the two countries.

The KSAP and the EWB have previously signed a Declaration reaffirming joint co-operation in areas such as trans-Atlantic co-operation and integration, regional stability, free movement of people, goods, capital and services, gender equality and others.

COVERAGE:

https://www.novosti.rs/vesti/politika/976918/metju-palmer-vidljiv-napredak-srbije-odnosi-sad-snazni

https://www.vesti-online.com/srbija-je-znacajno-napredovala/

https://www.nedeljnik.rs/palmer-srbija-znacajno-napredovala-poslednjih-nekoliko-godina/

https://www.b92.net/info/vesti/index.php?yyyy=2021&mm=03&dd=19&nav_category=78&nav_id=1829696&utm_source=prva&utm_medium=box&utm_campaign=b92_prva_vesti_sidebar

https://www.srbijadanas.com/vesti/info/odnosi-srbije-i-amerike-bolji-nego-ikada-palmerova-otkrio-sta-misli-o-vucicevoj-vizionarskoj-2021-03-19

http://www.rtv.rs/sr_lat/politika/palmer-vidljiv-napredak-srbije-snazni-odnosi-sa-sad_1220162.html

https://www.dnevnik.rs/politika/palmer-vidliv-napredak-srbije-snazni-odnosi-sa-sad-19-03-2021

https://www.rts.rs/page/stories/sr/story/9/politika/4301521/metju-palmer-odnosi-srbija-sad.html

http://dnevnenovine.rs/browser/?onsurl=s%3A%2F%2Frs.n1info.com%2Fenglish%2Fnews%2Fus-palmer-euro-skepticism-in-serbia-understandable-road-to-eu-tough%2F&onstitle=US%E2%80%99%20Palmer%3A%20Euro-skepticism%20in%20Serbia%20understandable%2C%20road%20to%20EU%20tough&onsdesc=Matthew%20Palmer%2C%20Special%20Representative%20for%20the%20Western%20Balkans%20and%20Deputy%20Assistant%20Secretary%20-%20US%20Department%20of%20State%20-%20Bureau%20of%20European%20and%20Eurasian%20Affairs%2C%20said%20on%20Friday%20the%20Euro-skepticism%20in%20Serbia%20was%20understandable%20since%20the%20reforms%20on%20the%20%20...&onsimage=

https://rs.n1info.com/vesti/palmer-evroskepticizam-u-srpskoj-javnosti-nije-nerazumljiv-tezak-put-ka-eu/

Subota:

http://www.politika.rs/scc/clanak/475353/Vidljiv-napredak-Srbije-snazni-odnosi-sa-SAD

https://www.blic.rs/vesti/politika/palmer-vidljiv-napredak-srbije-snazni-odnosi-sa-sad/rj4n37s

https://www.danas.rs/svet/metju-palmer-vasington-podrzava-evropski-put-srbije/

https://www.rts.rs/page/stories/sr/story/9/politika/4301521/metju-palmer-odnosi-srbija-sad.html?fbclid=IwAR0fsiG743UWJBYg_vdUBjOTBz1PZjfGb6a3HyxbNIaUFnDnpSxrIQvfd3U


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