Brussels is likely to force Serbia to impose sanctions against Russia if Belgrade wants more progress in EU accession negotiations, the Serbian Blic newspaper reports.
According to Blic, Serbia hopes that EU-Russia relations will improve in the coming year and Belgrade will not have to choose between Brussels and Moscow.
“The government in Belgrade will have to align their behavior with Brussels to a much greater extent,” the newspaper cited Belgrade diplomatic sources as saying on Thursday, explaining that this means that Serbia will be asked to conform to European anti-Russia sanctions.
Serbia applied to join the European Union in 2009, and received EU candidate status in 2012. Currently, Belgrade is in the process of negotiating its accession to the bloc.
Serbian Finance Minister Dusan Vujovic told Sputnik last week that Serbia maintains an “equally good relationship” with both Russia and the West, despite the sanctions that the European Union and the United States have imposed against Russia, accusing Moscow of being involved in Ukraine’s internal conflict.
Moscow has refuted Western allegations of any alleged involvement in Ukraine, stating repeatedly that the economic restrictions against Russia are counterproductive.
Serbia has declined to join the Western sanctions introduced against Russia.