tv Conflict Zone - Guest Ana Brnabic Deutsche Welle November 15, 2018 1:30pm-2:00pm CET
inventors entrepreneurs and high tech professionals talk about vision success is a day to day business to keep. its feet just in the everyone just. has to. keep pushing. i. did you told africa starts december twelfth w. subir is pushing ahead with moves to join the european union but brussels is so far unimpressed with its reforms my guest this week visiting ballin is the serbian prime minister i'm not buying that bitch why so little progress on so many key issues.
prime minister anna boden a bitch welcome to conflict zone thank you very much thank you for inviting one of the conditions for serbia joining the e.u. is that you signed a legally binding agreement on peaceful relations with kosovo which declared its independence in two thousand and eight you've never recognize that these talks come and go sometimes their own sometimes they're off why should the e.u. bother with all this feuding and bilateral disputes that you have with cos over here too much trouble for the launch. i think as much as our interest is to join the e.u. i think the enlargement to cover balkans is also in the news interest i think first and foremost european union is of this project and it's a successful one because we have for the first time in history your long term peace in europe would you say that but i know you have made it clear haven't they they cannot and will not import bilateral disputes junko deal because said it last year
that's pretty clear isn't it because it's clear they're not going to point to a dispute with kosovo it is absolutely clear if you don't settle it there you're not going to get you know that it's normal to me i think that's just natural thing to do i would ask that if i were the e.u. as well so you're not going to settle this any time soon you've admitted that yourself so there's not really no perspective for you joining in the foreseeable future i would one hundred percent disagree with you on that point because firstly the the soonest possible date for us to join the e.u. is twenty twenty five so by twenty twenty five i think there is a possibility that we actually signed a long term normalization agreement with british to really it doesn't look like it at the moment but i'm not saying that this will happen i'm saying that serbia is committed to it it doesn't depend on serbia alone depends also on prishtina as well as on other allies of ours so i think we're going into that in the direction
of the e.u. for me what's important is that we actually implement all the reforms so that as a society politically economically. we become fit for the e.u. yeah but you say that i want to come on to those reforms so long in a little bit because the e.u.'s far from happy with the state of your reforms but last week no he loves i would also disagree with the phrase well growth will go through a general term will go directly into. india large one strategy the e.u. clearly identified serbia and montenegro as frontrunners are would say that is far from being this. disappointed by the run for answers but he's getting fed up with the un at the sofia summit in may and later in london there was a pretty lukewarm attitude to all six balkan countries looking to join the e.u.
no mention of any timetable for accession and some pretty clear opposition from the french president emmanuel markram wasn't that clear opposition only let me just say i do not think that you have the right to say that you use fed up with us i don't think it's diplomatic but i don't think you can say that on behalf of the e.u. if look what you what he said. was fed up with us. then we would not have any new chapters so and and we do have new chapters being constantly opened and that the trend is that we are going towards the e.u. well that's not a role it is a president micro who said what we've seen over the past fifteen years is a path that has weakened europe every time we think of enlarging it and i don't think we do a service to the count of countries or ourselves by having a mechanism that in a way no longer has rules and keeps moving towards more enlargement and though that
was hardly welcoming you with both the rosary and i agree with president mccrone one hundred percent i do not think that enlargement in the past was particularly successful i think though likely to be with you can i think that all likely do it with you and i think that the consequence of that kind of accession to the e.u. is that the country whose accessing the e.u. is weaker because its economy cannot compete its agriculture cannot compete they suffer from a huge brain drain and the e.u. gets weaker so why don't you put your membership on hold stop taking the funds and sort out the bilateral problems with kosovo you know the other refer to them in our membership in four hundred how many fund how much money do you get from your you know you're getting hundreds of millions you're getting much less than that we're getting pretty accession funds in the pre accession funds are exactly smaller than for the funds that the e.u. member states are getting believe given the virus in the two in it just for the
money that's and that is completely that is completely not right legally president you're president then you think yourself just if i can just say or you can have your interview with yourself if i can just say something firstly we've always said to our citizens that we cannot and will not look at towards the e.u. as a pot of money that the. that the better quality of life the jobs better salaries need to come from ourselves and the strength of our economy that we want to be part of the e.u. because news of peace project and we have shared values with the e.u. so if that's true why did president who cheats three years ago when he was prime minister make it clear when he told a meeting in tehran we are fed up with seminars we need some money from the e.u. funds then you'll see the smiles on our faces that would be
a clear indication that he was simply after the money would say that you took out the statement if it's correct and i do not remember that it is a direct a real revolution on multiple news lately are the context if anything president ford as the prime minister repeated lee said e.u. is not a pot of money for us we need to take of take care of our own economy our jobs our infrastructure the e.u. is a different goal for serbia now whether we're going to be ready by twenty twenty five to join the e.u. is another question and i think if you ask me if the e.u. said you can join tomorrow odds say no because we're not ready which would which would mean that again we get in a large amount in which serbia would be worse off and europe would be worse are very very can horrible. stood in the reforms themselves when it comes when it comes
to course of our promise to you keep raising the bar down to you now say that any final deal will have to be comprehensive it will have to include among other things human rights minority rights economic cooperation learning each other's language and cultural heritage you settle this in the region through to the house that raising the bar it's going to take a long time twenty years at least why should the. you wait around for a man who says the e.u. will wait around for that if it takes twenty years obviously we want to join the e.u. who says that the e.u. will wait around who's asking the e.u. to wait you are you continuing with your membership application and you but of course so you wanted to wait around but of course because we want to become members of the e.u. but i am more interested in the reforms once we implemented reforms the e.u. will come as a natural called consequence of these reforms if they want to wait for and that's fine if they don't want to wait around that's all that is fine to us that there
will not change you know i don't mind whether they wait around or that they will not change serbian policies a little bit of life of citizens in serbia ok well let's talk about let me just tell him not real utility to understand what the e.u. is for us firstly the reforms in our e.u. accession parth mean that we have strong stable economy that we have we implemented structural reforms that will lead to strong stable economy what about margaret rights of press freedom things largely at the minute but about the first real if you let me finish i'll come to that the second pillar is efficient transparent public and public administration the third pillar is the rule of law more stronger more independent but also more efficient and more accountable judiciary talk about press freedom one of the most glaring failures of your government has been your refusal to protect freedom of speech in february the council of europe's human
rights commission has said the atmosphere in which journalists work in serbia appears to have deteriorated quite seriously especially with the smear campaigns against journalists with some bullets asians calling them traitors foreign agents and mercenaries you have denied that any of this is the case but europe isn't buying your denials is it. well firstly i see that there is a freedom of media in serbia i see no smear campaigns again i just i see criticism of the president of myself of the government every single day in the media as it should be what about the supposedly. democratic society promise to let me give you an example alexander mcqueen of a senior official of your ruling progressive party he labeled the head of the independent journalists association a voyage void in a and enemy of serbia because he made critical comments about the authorities is that acceptable is an enemy of serbia i'm not saying that it's
acceptable for your sake it doesn't happen well for one thing i'm saying that there is a media freedom and in serbia i'm saying that there is that there is me and they're saying we as it was in which journalists work in serbia appears to have deteriorated quite seriously bad some of these absolutely do not like re with that in serbia i think we are makes it up listen in serbia. about ten years ago or a little bit over the over the when we actually had a democratically democratically oriented political party in power the members of the ruling coalition kicked physically kicked journalists. the the so you think it's untrue moment now that they're just one president now they're just certain the anti corruption console so that media is completely politically influenced i think we have a lot to deal with in serbia and we are dealing with it and i think the situation
is improving and by no means by no means worse than in last night's event last month an official from the security information agency the marco the rich so the greatest threat to serbia of a foreign agents working in media nongovernmental agencies and opposition parties it's an easy smear isn't it talk about foreign agents in the media when you have no evidence for that what it is absolutely ridiculous to quote one public servant at the conference where the president of serbia talked about threats and i'd talked about threats and you have the president and the prime minister talking about about threats which is migration terrorism cyber security and costs when the thought here and no one is quoting that the actual official policy of serbia has never i haven't said so you didn't do you know you said no not you think this is all taken out of context in his latest i think that you had two of the highest official of of serbia
saying what the threats are and everyone disregarding this just so that someone can take words of one single public servant prime minister in family with a case in its latest report in april the european commission said the fact that no progress had been made to safeguard freedom of expression was a matter of increasing concern that was in april serbian or thora he said the commission need to provide active support to independent bodies human rights defenders and independent journalists and promptly react to and publicly condemn the threats. against them so why don't you do what the commission ask you to of done exactly the thing that the commission asked me to do and we're very sorry you have and thank you so much for those but let's see let's see the upcoming report thank you for that question actually in fact as the prime minister i searched on
with all the media representatives talk to them about how what we can do to come up with a credible media strategy they've asked me for me personally to run this the working group are actually in my cabinet in my team and not under the minister of culture and information that we have the working group. to work on the media strategy this is exactly what we're doing right now with the support of the european commission that is the european delegation in serbia. the corner of the stiff tongue the oil sea and the region embassy in serbia ok and this and also the medium of carrying through to europe this is not having all through to you or you will see in the next really in the upcoming really bored and and all that said i'm not going home from asia where we see improvements there and well also of course really was we in the meantime i was not going well by the resident if i can
just not go well either if you know it's going really well really show i'll tell you also the media representatives ours that we have it called the nation body also under my cabinet as the prime minister we too will in parallel with media strategy work on the dissolving ad hoc issues that media have in serbia we've agreed to that as well we are doing that they meet once a month and they are already resolving issues if you want to you know i was my government is the first government to actually implement the open data policy we have we have we are doing that together and like i mentioned earlier we have adopted the parliament has adopted law the law on the government which makes opening data in serbia i understand that earlier this year the pound is a lot of euro seems to me that you do understand i understand what you're saying but the e.u. disagrees with it and so does the council of europe and the human rights commission
who complained in this reporter earlier this year that things with regard to access to information are not going well the government is not implementing the recommendations of the commissioner for information of public importance and the parliament is not discussing his reports you want to continue down this road because they're not buying your denials of this. i'm not saying that these are denials the. so much work to be done and i'm saying gus said i said yesterday. at the conference of konrad adenauer stiffed them i think if we look at our integration in three key pillars economy public administration rule of law by far the most was done in the economy i would say in terms of structural reforms eighty five percent of the job has been done which is shown in the numbers that serbia has right now our g.d.p. growth in this year was four point five percent our our employment coughed our are we are the world leaders in the eye of traction in terms of public administration
reform public pub probably fifty percent of the job has done still a long way to go in terms of the rule of law thirty percent has been done so we have a long long way to go you have a long way to go on the issue of war crimes as well but the e.u. is still not satisfied with you perform well in you you are certainly not one hundred percent satisfied with our progress and one hundred with would say that serbia by far is the best case example in the region of how to deal with the war crimes really value in january twenty sixth in the may twenty seventh in serbia had no formally appointed war crimes prosecutor and that account for seventeen months and that's about was that was a way of showing your willingness to deal with this and they have not seen much no interest that you can you can absolutely disregard everything that serbia has been doing. with respect to the war crimes since two thousand since in the last eight
hundred years ok and the last of the one read. the most of all other countries in the according to the great action plan for a trip to twenty three of the e.u. application five additional deputy prosecutor should have been appointed by the end of to twenty seventeen why weren't they if you are doing everything you need to do . well to be honest i don't know the answer to that question but we've appointed them now and i have to say that you know you have you know priorities first and serbia literally four years ago was three months away from bank bankruptcy which goes to say that we really had to focus all of our effort all of our strength on very difficult very unpopular economic reforms you cannot do everything at the same time so far there's been no indictments against senior military or police officials for war crimes there are currently fifteen cases ongoing the majority involve low ranking military or police defendants what's the deal the higher ups the senior
officers get away with it in the lower ones take the prosecutions is that it to go i. do not agree with you and again i think that serbia has done by far the most still you know still there is a job to be done but i think that serbia and i am absolutely proud with how serbia has handled our issues from the past are you are you proud of the trend in serbia that the points to to see former war criminals as heroes or role models do you subscribe to the no i do not i do not i think that you know we see in other countries in the region that the war criminals actually war or indicted war criminal sexually have official that all says advisors to the presidents or in the government you know we have we see some being even the prime ministers but in serbia you do not have those kind of things you have the millers out of it for
instance convicted for crimes against ethnic albanians in kosovo cause if you wanted lecture at the serbian military academy not he was convicted he served his sentence he was released his in serbia now he was one time all acts just like. chair at the military academy or on the farm nor if i'm not mistaken on what was the call but. during the middle nato bombing campaign over serbia so he's not appointed the lecturer at the military and make her last scene of each convicted of similar acts later be appointed to his old position as a member of the executive council of the serbian socialist party happy with or that is serbian socialist party has nothing to do with the government has nothing to do with the official functions your hundreds of little serbia rehabilitate him into public life and these people. these what what do you want to do with these
people if they were convicted serve their sentence do you and who are released do you want us to lock them up in serbia so they can not show their faces i'm going to sit in parliament like voice for instance what made voiceless fashion i remember says he's proud of all the war crimes and crimes against humanity that were i will remind him i will remind you while talking about the rule of law and voice of session handed himself to the hague tribunal voluntarily had in thirteen years thirteen years trial is that what you call who loved law and was then acquitted came back to serbia and then incredible was overturned this year it was overturned it was overturned but thirteen years is all your sentence by and that's free because of time so of course of course this still whole all him at least three years of his
life. their money or step on or is this was a lot now money a stepparent of it from the center for humanitarian law in belgrade serbia has not moved an inch from the time when the wars were being fought in the one nine hundred ninety s. as one after another war criminals are released and give a serve given a ceremonial reception by the government on their return they've been ushered back into public institutions he said i'm just telling you that that's not true so he can say what he doesn't he doesn't know what he's talking about i don't i disagree with him so and to say that serbia hasn't done anything is unbelievable i didn't say i haven't done anything i said the rough according to the e.u. as i'm done enough ok perhaps we can do more and and we will to ensure the rule of law in serbia and to end in to deal with the past and turn towards the future serbia will do its part but i would actually caution everyone
not to really look at serbia a lot but to also look at what other countries in the region are doing does doing what's expected of it for you include acknowledging that the massacre at srebrenica in one thousand nine hundred ninety five was genocide you were asked in may last year by the council of ministers a council of europe to recognize srebrenica as genocide you've never done that are you prepared to do that no i do not think that the terrible crime massacre in stride was a genocide you must know that unless you take this step the chances of you joining me your opinion is very slim i know i don't know the. we know because it was a huge news crime it was a war crime i am not happy because of it it wasn't done in the name of serbian
people and serbian kid not assert serbs cannot be called actively. be blamed for what happened there two courts the international criminal tribunal for tribunal for the former yugoslavia an international court of justice both ruled that it was genocide. and you won't accept it i do not think it was a chance cite your rewriting history and you trying to rewrite history i do not think it was a genocide i think it was but let me just say it seems like you know you know i think it was it was a terrible terrible crime but genocide is basically when you are genocide is when you are you know killing the entire population women children and this was not the case in two thousand and four the presiding judge of the criminal tribunal for the former yugoslavia said by seeking to eliminate
a part of the bosnian muslims the bosnian serb forces committed genocide they targeted for extinction the forty thousand bosnian muslims living in srebrenica a group which was emblematic of the bosnian muslims in general that's why it was labeled genocide. and if you can if you if you can't accept it why should i stop thing it was a terrible crime serbia delivered the person who was charged with more crime we've delivered that person he was on trial he's in jail but you won't accept the step which the council of europe asks you to accept that it was a genocide yeah i'm telling you it was about your red line is it i'm telling you you're never going to do it i told you my answer. i miss them i live for the beach thank you very much you know.
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