Serbia “threatens third Balkan war”, warns Kosovar PM
“They want to behave as if they were Germany between two world wars: ‘if you’re not going to please us, we will provoke another.’ Because they took a tour in the 90s.
“If you check the figures for military spending in Serbia, the last few years have skyrocketed. Who are they buying all of this for? ” he added.
“The fact that I say this very calmly is because I saw it coming months and years ago,” he added. “It’s a rational analysis – not an emotional analysis.”
Serbia’s defense spending has more than doubled since 2015 and is expected to spend around $ 1.14 billion (£ 840 million) in 2021, making it the largest military expenditure in the Western Balkans.
It has heavily modernized its air force and purchased drones, planes and air defense systems from Russia and China.
Mr. Vucic denied preparing for war and defended his country’s right to buy weapons wherever it saw fit.
But neighbors say the military build-up is accompanied by conflicting policies and belligerent political rhetoric over unifying the “Serbian world”, ominously recalling the escalation of wars in Croatia, Bosnia and Kosovo in the years. 1990.
Kosovar officials insist the politics have produced interrelated crises across the region that are designed to stir up chaos and force the West to accept an increase in Belgrade’s influence and power within the old ones. neighboring Yugoslav republics.
Last week, Christian Schmidt, the United Nations senior representative in Bosnia, warned in a report to the UN that the country could separate and that the 1995 Dayton peace accord would collapse if the Serbian leader from Bosnia Milorad Dodik continued his plan to withdraw the Bosnian army. , judicial and fiscal structures and build its own army.
Mr Dodik, the president of Republika Srpska, the Bosnian Serb entity created at the end of the 1992-1995 war, said last month that he intended to declare full autonomy from Sarajevo. . He insisted that the Repubika Srpska would remain part of Bosnia and denied attempting to start a war, but hinted that Russia would provide support if the West attempted to intervene militarily.
In September, riots broke out in Montenegro after the Serbian Orthodox Church appointed a new patriarch in the country, a move seen by some as an attempt by Belgrade to regain control there.