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Fearing Military Threat, Welcoming Energy Investment, Serbia Sides With Russia in Sanctions Battle

Serbian team competing in the Tank Biathlon World Championship in Alabino, Russia, on August 4, 2014. Source DPA
Serbia wants to avoid being pulled into a conflict with Russia.
  • Why it matters

    Why it matters

    Serbia’s decision to side with Russia in its sanctions battle with the West helps Moscow cement in part its regional influence in southeastern Europe.

  • Facts


    • Serbia has asked to be admitted to the European Union by 2020.
    • The former Yugoslav republic has sided with Russia against Western sanctions.
    • In July, Russia announced generous terms for a Gazprom pipeline that will transit through Serbia.
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Most eastern European countries have no desire to be pulled into a face-off with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Serbian Foreign Minister Ivica Dacic spoke for his country and others in the region when he said a country can’t implement sanctions against another bigger and stronger than itself.

Serbia, which would like to become a member of the European Union by 2020, is under pressure from Brussels to join in E.U. sanctions against Russia, but Moscow is keeping Serbia, it’s traditional ally in the Balkans, at its side by using both a carrot and a stick.


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