Washington, 27th July 2018 - First Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Ivica Dacic was on a two-day visit to the U.S., to attend the Ministerial Conference dedicated to religious freedoms and the ceremony marking the hundredth anniversary of flying the Serbian flag over the White House.
Serbian Foreign Minister had very successful meetings with the U.S. National Security Advisor John Bolton and the U.S. Assistant Secretary of State Wess Mitchell.
"This was an extremely significant visit with good outcomes for Serbia. It was an excellent opportunity to discuss resetting and revitalizing our relations with the U.S., which is why the meetings and the conference I took part in were particularly useful.
I attended the ceremony in the U.S. Congress marking a historic event, i.e. the hundredth anniversary of flying the Serbian flag over the White House.
I had talks with the U.S. Assistant Secretary of State Wess Mitchell and National Security Advisor John Bolton. The talks were constructive and held in a positive atmosphere.
New U.S. Administration is more attuned to our positions, demonstrates better understanding of our views as well as an interest in resetting our relations and helping stabilize the situation in the region.
According to U.S. National Security Advisor John Bolton, they considered that the past U.S. policy towards the region was "autopilot-guided" – the policy defined 20-30 years ago. The current U.S. Administration is ready to at least take into account on an equal footing our proposals for the resolution of major problems in the region - a lasting solution to the Kosovo and Metohija problem certainly being one of those.
I conveyed to Mr. Bolton President Vucic's regards, with whom he spoke a few weeks ago.
We will maintain the contacts, and I repeat, with substantial U.S. support to dialogue. This is a huge change compared to only two years ago since in all talks with the representatives of U.S. institutions it was maintained that the Kosovo issue had already been resolved.
Today, a compromise solution is openly supported. At the moment, this is particularly positive and encouraging for Serbia, as a possibility to reach a solution in the interest of all parties involved through dialogue.
I also took part in the Conference on religious freedoms. It was a very important conference which included participants such as U.S. Vice President Mike Pence and the U.S. Secretary of State Pompeo. Mr. Kushner, President Trump's advisor, was also present as well as many foreign ministers.
In my talks I focused on Serbia's positions. I was under the impression and I told this to President Vucic that the situation seemed to have significantly changed compared to the past period. I also told him that we should take this opportunity to work with U.S. Administration to reach a solution for problems in the region, to reaffirm our foreign policy position and to pursue our EU path. Therefore, the problems in the region should be resolved whereby everybody stands to gain something instead of counting losses. It is a huge change indeed and perhaps a good sign that it coincides with this landmark event, the hundredth anniversary since the Serbian flag flew over the White House", Serbian Foreign Minister said in Washington D.C.