Days ago, two high-ranking officials of the Serbian List had a visit to the United States of America! Slavko Simic and Igor Simic had the opportunity to meet with the State Department’s Special Representative for the Western Balkans, Gabriel Escobar. The two Simics informed diplomat Escobar about the position of the Serbian List on the circumstances in the north of Kosovo, where the Serbian minority is concentrated, as well as about the political and security situation. However, in an interview for Voice of America, Vice President Igor Simic explained the positions of the Serb List. In this interview, Simic also makes clear the Serbian List’s lack of will to de-escalate, which is evident in words and figures.
At the very beginning of the interview, the Vice-President of the Serbian List, Igor Simic, is asked to give his assessment of the situation, while he starts with the qualification that the elected mayors of the four municipalities in the north of the country are ” illegal mayors,” while the journalist replies, “How illegal? Maybe not legitimate, but not illegal either!” Although this attracts attention, Simic justifies himself with “I think they are illegal because the members of the election commissions are cousins of the mayors.” He then mentions the CEC regulations. However, the expert does not mention the fact that the same surnames do not determine tribal proximity at all. This “irregularity” was not mentioned by any local or international body after the electoral process.
When asked what contribution the Serbian list will make in order not to reach the situation, Simic does not answer, but assumes the conditions that the other side must fulfill. The journalist says that this is clear and the Kosovo government knows it. For the Serbian List’s contribution to the reconciliation of the situation, Simic still does not answer, but says that “the conditions for elections must be created.” When we have situations where thousands of people are not living in north Kosovo today because they are on secret arrest lists, including doctors, professors, public figures, people with integrity for the community.” The VOA reporter should intervene. “We have to take this a little with a grain of salt, because it’s not easy to prove, because these are just your words, unlike me, who has no idea about this – except from what I have heard…” . Since there are no facts on this, only propaganda, he cites as a counter-statement that EULEX took a position and demanded that there should be no arbitrary arrests of Serbs.
The journalist directly attacks the propaganda of his guest from Srpska Lista. “Well, they didn’t talk about the lists,” the journalist adds, insisting to know if it is enough to express the will that the Serbian list is ready for peace, without giving a concrete answer if they will participate in the elections, although according to the EU it is a prerequisite for de-escalation? After a blockade of explanation and justification, Simic says that “it is really irresponsible to talk about the elections like a magic pill that will solve all open questions.” In the journalist’s insistence that their participation in the elections is required by the U.S., the EU and those who spoke in Washington. Simic wants the abolition of the police, de-escalation, but does not see participation in the electoral process as an obligation. When they have presented this position to the interlocutors in Washington, Simic says, “Yes, and we have met with great understanding for such a position.” The only difference is that they hope for de-escalation, while I, as a person living in Kosovo, don’t see that de-escalation.”
On the question of whether it can come to a decision as a Serbian political party in Kosovo to participate in the electoral process independently of Belgrade, the Vice-President of the Serbian List, Igor Simic, tries to clarify that the previous decisions were made by him the people in advance. “… The decision of the Serbian people, not the decision made in Belgrade.” The boycott of the elections organized against our will was also a decision of the Serbian people. Belgrade had no influence on this decision. I remind you that the Serbian list wanted to leave the institutions of Kosovo more than ten times, alerting the international public that our basic human rights are threatened.
At the request of official Belgrade we did not do this, we wanted to give peace a chance.” When the journalist reminds Simic that the internationals, that is, those in Washington, but also in the EU, say that Belgrade should not interfere in the elections that are to be held in the fall. Simic contradicts himself again. “Serbs in Kosovo would not survive in Kosovo if they did not have Belgrade. Salaries, pensions, child benefits, social benefits, funding for schools and hospitals. None of this would be possible. People’s direct survival depends on Belgrade.” The same set of contradictions.
When about the 45 new policemen of the Serbian community engaged in the Kosovo Police, Simic tries to explain something only after repeated insistence of the journalist. “The campaign you are talking about, as far as I could find the sources, is actually a message published by an anonymous person on the social network Telegram,” explains the vice president of the Serbian List, Igor Simic. This explanation also seems banal to the Voice of America journalist. “Wait a minute, okay. But it triggered the reaction of EULEX, the American ambassador: ‘Do not downplay things now, a message on Telegram?”, responds the journalist. Simic says that Serbian List has not contributed in this area. Simic insists not to consider the campaign of intimidation, but a message on Telegram, but that was powerful.
When Simic is asked if it is known who were the masked people who beat the KFOR soldiers, and if the Serbian list in the good spirit you want to build can help bring the perpetrators of violence to justice, he tries again not to answer, but to praise peace as literature, but not as practice. “We believe that Kosovar and international institutions should understand that it is necessary to keep the peace.” I cannot identify people, I am not a policeman – I have no right to do that. The Serbian List can do what it has done since that day: talk to citizens and explain that it is necessary to keep the peace. At the same time, Prishtina must not arbitrarily arrest Serbs, implying that they have committed acts of violence. This must be confirmed by the court.” He does not agree in any way to talk about his party’s direct contribution to the events of escalation of violence in the four municipalities in northern Kosovo.
The interview was the explanation of how even in Washington the representatives of the Serbian List are not willing to de-escalate and establish law and order in Leposavic, Zubin Potok, Zvecan and North Mitrovica, but a maximum attempt to propagate even when there were contradictions immediately. /TheGeopost.