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NATO Secretary General in Belgrade

News and Press Release
Originally published
On 18 July, the Mr de Hoop Scheffer made an official visit to Belgrade, almost exactly a year after his first visit to Serbia and Montenegro.

He met President Marovic of Serbia and Montenegro, President Tadic, Prime Minister Kostunica, Foreign Minister Draskovic, Deputy Prime Minister Labus and Defence Minister Davinic of Serbia. He also met President Vujanovic and Prime Minister Djukanovic of Montenegro.

The Secretary General discussed ongoing developments in Kosovo, and urged Serbia and Montengro's leaders to support the full participation of Kosovo's Serbs in the Provisional Institutions of Self Government. He also urged Belgrade to engage in more political-level discussions with Pristina, to address effectively issues of common concern.

An agreement between NATO and Serbia and Montenegro on Lines of Communication was signed by the Secretary General and Foreign Minister Draskovic. This is a technical agreement which will allow NATO personnel and equipment to transit through the country, facilitating the regular logistical support for KFOR. It also demonstrated the good relations and effective partnership between NATO and Serbia and Montenegro.

Finally, the Secretary General discussed with all his interlocuters the country's ambitions to join the NATO Partnership for Peace (PfP) programme. He made it clear that while all Allies share that ambition, and while defence reform in Serbia and Montenegro is making progress, full cooperation with the International Tribunal in the Hague -- and in particular, where that concerns General Mladic -- is necessary before PfP membership can happen.