Bulgaria to Lobby for Serbia, Kosovo Membership in EU, NATO

Politics » DIPLOMACY | May 1, 2010, Saturday // 13:32| Views: | Comments: 0
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Bulgaria: Bulgaria to Lobby for Serbia, Kosovo Membership in EU, NATO Bulgaria's Foreign Minister Nikolay Mladenov gave a lecture at the US Washington Center for Strategic and International Studies, stating that Bulgaria was prepared to give a helping hand to Kosovo and Serbia. Photo by BGNES

Bulgaria's government intends to support the EU and NATO candidacy of Serbia and Kosovo, said the Bulgarian Foreign Minister Nikolay Mladenov.

During his lecture at the Washington Center for Strategic and International Studies, Minister Mladenov pointed out that one of the main tasks of the Bulgarian government is “to help other countries become members of EU and NATO,” BGNES reports.

Bulgaria's top diplomat explained that “the Bulgarian Cabinet cooperates closely with Serbia to help it overcome the difficult period it is going through and achieve peace with Kosovo.”

Minister Mladenov was quick to note that Kosovo too “is a country in a very difficult situation,” adding that “Kosovars need to be assisted into establishing state institutions in Pristina that will work to secure peace between the ethnic Albanians and the Serbians that live there.”

Bulgaria's Foreign Minister commented on the recent agreement between Russia and Ukraine to leave Russian Black Sea Fleet at the Crimean port by saying that there should be military balance in the Black Sea region. “The Balck sea coastline belongs not only to Russia or Ukraine but also to Bulgaria, Turkey, Romania, Georgia,” said Mladenov in front of his audience at the Washington Center.

Mladenov concluded by saying that “Russians must participate in resolving all security issues within the Black Sea region and the Russian republic should considered a friend and a partner. Russians, on the other hand, must understand that establishing anti-missile bases in Bulgaria is not an action against them but one aimed at securing peace,” added Mladenov.

Bulgaria’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, Nikolay Mladenov is on a 7-day officail visit in USA (April 28 – May 4).

During his official visit, Minister Mladenov held talks with James Jones, United States National Security Advisor, focusing on problems of the Western Balkans, the joint military operations in Afghanistan and the new NATO strategy.

With Ellen Tauscher, the US Under Secretary of State for Arms Control and International Security Affairs, Mladenov discussed Bulgaria’s inclusion in the US defense shield in Europe and issues related to nuclear security. Both sides have expressed desire to continue and deepen the dialogue about the shield, both bilaterally and within NATO.

Energy topics were the main items on the agenda of the meeting with Sen. Richard Lugar, who pointed out the EU-backed gas line “Nabucco” is Bulgaria’s best option as far as energy security is concerned.

Lugar also spoke about his intentions to encourage the US government to work on a coherent strategy for anti-missile defense in Europe, especially in the southeastern part of the old continent over its proximity to the Middle East.

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Tags: Nikolay Mladenov, Foreign Affairs Minister, US visit, kosovo, Serbia, Russia, Ukraine, EU, NATO
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