Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton met with Serbian President Boris Tadic in Belgrade, Serbia, on October 12, 2010. The Secretary and President Tadic discussed a number of issues, including the progress of Serbia's democracy over the past decade, the goal of EU integration, and Serbia's strong cooperation with the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia.
The Secretary said, "For me personally, it is a great honor to be here in Serbia 10 years after the people of this country began to reclaim their own future. That victory of the people's will was a milestone in the long struggle to build Serbia's democracy. And in the decade that has followed, Serbia has made great progress, and we, speaking on behalf of the United States, owe a debt of gratitude to all of those who helped create that progress: members of Serbia's civil society; its political leaders, Mr. President; and of course, the citizens themselves."
She continued, "Achieving the goal of EU integration requires leadership. And Mr. President, you have been providing that leadership. Now, there are areas where, as the President said, we will not agree, and foremost among them is Kosovo. But we believe that the September 9th United Nations General Assembly resolution provides a good basis for a meaningful, forward-looking dialogue between Belgrade and Pristina. That dialogue can and will benefit people in Kosovo and Serbia by addressing practical, day-to-day issues and the long-term relationship between you. It will also have a positive impact on the relationship between Serbia, your neighbors, Europe, and the United States.
"I also want publicly to thank Serbia for your strong cooperation with the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia. I appreciate all that has been done by your government, particularly your law enforcement officials, and I appreciate again hearing from President Tadic the high priority that Serbia places on fulfilling its remaining obligations to the Tribunal."
In conclusion, Secretary Clinton said, "Let me close by reaffirming our admiration for the progress that has taken place here in Serbia over the last decade. As Vice President Biden said when he was here, the United States values Serbia as a country with not only a tremendous history, but more importantly a vast potential. We believe in the potential of Serbia. Serbian Americans have made many contributions to the growth and development of the United States, and we are absolutely convinced that Serbia can become not only a member of the European Union but a leader in Europe, an example in Europe. And the United States is committed to working with you to help you build a better future for this country, for your people, and for this region."
You can read the Secretary's full remarks here.
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