The defence and security cooperation is one of the most important forms of cooperation of countries in the region, Serbian Defence Minister Dragan Šutanovac said at a meeting of the defence ministers of countries participating in a Southeastern Europe Cooperation Process meeting held in Belgrade. They discussed the promotion of cooperation in the region on the issue of resolving the surplus of armament. More from Suzana Mitić.
The EU candidacy has opened a new chapter and prospects of relations between the Republic of Serbia and the EU, said Minister Dragan Šutanovac, opening a gathering in the Palace of Serbia. Serbia has begun active engagement in the framework of the common security and defence policy and is taking part for the first time in the EU crisis management operations.
European integrations are a strategic priority of the Republic of Serbia and regional cooperation, as a prerequsite, is one of the pillars of our foreign policy, said Šutanovac. Serbia is currently presiding three regional initiatives, including the Southeastern Europe Cooperation Process, and under way are preparations for taking over the presidency of the OSCE, in 2015. We support the integration of our neighbours in European and international security structures and we believe that is the only way towards stabilization and prosperity in southeastern Europe, emphasized Šutanovac. He pointed to the significant support of international and regional organizations to efforts of countries in the region aimed at the implementation of reforms and the establishment of modern European and international standards in all the spheres of society by strengthening partner relations.
In addition to the armament surplus issue, the topics of the meeting also included bilateral relations between the participating states. The delegations of the defence departments of the following countries and institutions took part in the gathering: Serbia, Croatia, Montenegro, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Macedonia, Slovenia, Albania, Romania, Bulgaria, Turkey, Greece, the UN, the EU, NATO, OSCE, the Regional Council for Cooperation and the Centre for Security Policy.