Moscow, Nov 21 NATO is ready to expand its relations with Serbia without undermining the country’s neutral status, NATO head Jens Stoltenberg said on Tuesday.
“The fact that we have exercise together […] does not mean that it undermines Serbia’s neutrality. Serbia has made it very clear that it will remain a neutral country, outside military blocs […] But we continue to believe that as a neutral country outside military blocs, Serbia can work closely with NATO and that will benefit NATO and that will benefit Serbia,” Stoltenberg said at a joint press conference with Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic.
Stoltenberg also welcomed the message from Vucic on the resumption of joint military exercises, saying that he believes “NATO and Serbia can do more together” and “have a partnership that goes far beyond the issues [the sides] address in Kosovo.”
“Serbia is an important regional actor and long-standing partner of NATO. A good example of our cooperation is joint work we have done over the past 10 years to NATO’s Science for Peace program and the way we work together also in different fields. Under the Science for Peace Program we work on energy, environmental security, advanced technologies and cyberdefense,” the NATO chief also said.
In June, Serbia hosted joint multinational NATO military exercise Platinum Wolf 23. About 600 troops from Serbia, the United States, Bosnia and Herzegovina, the United Kingdom, Greece, Italy, Hungary, Romania, and North Macedonia were trained for tactical maneuvers and interoperability.