The Foreign Minister of Sweden, currently hosting the presidency of the European Union, stated on Saturday that Russia, the USA and the European Union should adopt a position of unity over the future of Montenegro, while claiming that the time is right for the United States to reduce its presence in the region, in favour of the European Union. Anna Lindh stated in the Swedish newspaper Dagens Nyheter:“The western Balkans may risk another crisis after today’s parliamentary vote in Montenegro”. She stated that any splitting of the Yugoslav Federation might create signals in Kosovo and Macedonia, areas already wholly destabilised by NATO-trained and NATO-armed groups of Albanian extremists. The Swedish Foreign Minister went on to say that whether or not Montenegrins vote for independence from Yugoslavia or integration on the current, or new, terms, it is imperative that the three main powers in the area, Russia, the United States and the EU, work together and present a common position. She also stated that the influence of the EU was rising and that of the USA falling in the Balkans: “The EU is now ready to take a greater responsibility in the region where only two years ago, the initiative belonged to the USA”, she is reported as saying.
JOHN ASHTEAD PRAVDA.RU LONDON
Russian President Vladimir Putin would never fall to the level of personal insults, Kremlin official spokesman Dmitry Peskov said