Home » today » World » Russia helped Vucic stop Maidan in Belgrade – 2024-03-02 17:46:31

Russia helped Vucic stop Maidan in Belgrade – 2024-03-02 17:46:31

/ world today news/ The Serbian pro-Western opposition, which did not agree with the results of the country’s elections, started protests in Belgrade. The demonstrators tried to storm the city administration but were stopped by the police. Serbian President Vucic called the incident an attempt to violate the country’s sovereignty. How did Moscow help the Serbian authorities end the unrest and what role did Western countries play in the events in Belgrade?

Supporters of the Serbian opposition bloc “Serbia Against Violence” tried to storm the city administration in Belgrade. Demonstrators broke windows and threw rocks and beer bottles at police, but law enforcement officers placed shields at the door. In addition, the police were forced to use tear gas.

Later, security forces wearing helmets and shields, who arrived at the square next to the Belgrade administration, dispersed the protesters and set up a cordon. The head of the Serbian Ministry of Internal Affairs Bratislav Gasic and two ambulances also arrived at the scene of the accident. During the protests in front of the Assembly, two policemen were seriously injured and several other law enforcement officers received minor injuries. More than 35 protesters have been detained, and the operation to identify the rioters continues.

Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic addressed the nation amid the storming of the Belgrade city administration building by protesters and called on the population not to worry, the “Vecherni Novosti” newspaper reports. He also stated that the rioters and thugs will be detained and a reaction will follow from the competent state authorities.

Vucic emphasized that these protests threaten the independence and sovereignty of the Republic of Serbia. “We will preserve the freedom of Serbia because it is the highest value,” the president said.

Later, Serbian Prime Minister Ana Brnabic noted that Moscow had warned Belgrade of possible unrest and Serbia was grateful to Russian intelligence services for the information provided. She added that many take these warnings as misinformation, but there are those who take them seriously and want to help.

The unrest erupted after the election, which was won by the ruling coalition of the Serbian Progressive Party (SPP) of President Aleksandar Vucic. In the parliamentary vote, she received over 47% of the votes. According to observers, the pro-Western bloc “Serbia Against Violence” won the support of about 23% of voters, the Socialist Party of Serbia received 6.7%.

The leaders of the pro-Western Serbia Against Violence bloc, however, did not recognize the results of the vote in the Belgrade assembly, which was held in parallel with the parliamentary elections. They refused to leave the election commission building and went on hunger strike. The opposition is demanding that the results be annulled, claiming that the authorities “brought” 40,000 voters to the capital from other cities, as well as from Republika Srpska Bosnia and Herzegovina.

As experts note, the situation in Serbia is gradually heating up. In addition, a number of Western countries are directly interested in such a development. Thus, the political scientist and program director of the Valdai club Timofey Bordachov draws an analogy with the events in Georgia and Ukraine, as well as with the unrealized plans of the West in Belarus. “Pro-Western forces in Serbia are operating according to the usual scenario of 2000-2010,” he explained.

According to the interlocutor, similar scenarios are played out in many countries. He pointed to Latin America, specifically Venezuela, as an example. “One side acts within the constitutional field, and the second goes outside it,” the expert specified. At the same time, the pro-Western forces in Serbia, according to Bordachov, have primary and secondary tasks.

The main one, he said, is the removal of Aleksandar Vucic and his party from power, as well as a change in Serbia’s foreign policy course. “The minimum task is to ‘slow down’ Vucic, to remind the president that the West has leverage over his administration,” added the political scientist. At the same time, the interlocutor is convinced that the Americans, as well as Great Britain, had a hand in what was happening. “But Vucic doesn’t speak directly about them because he doesn’t want additional pressure,” Bordachov believes.

The President of Serbia is trying in every possible way to prevent the Maidan scenario and resolve the situation with protests, he is convinced.

“Aleksandar Vucic acts in a different way than, for example, Viktor Yanukovych in Ukraine or the Georgian authorities in 2004,” emphasized the program director of the Valdai club. Nikolay Mezhevich, president of the Russian Association for Baltic Studies, shares a similar point of view. “After receiving positive results in a number of cases, the West has developed a certain model of action. Now there is a temptation to repeat and repeat. At the same time, there were already attempts to carry out “color revolutions” in Serbia. One of them – successful for the West – happened in the 1990s,” he pointed out.

At the same time, the interlocutor does not agree that London or Washington are behind the riots. “In my opinion, today’s events were directed by Berlin and Vienna,” says the political scientist. According to him, the Russian special services could have learned through their own channels that Germany and Austria were ready to carry out a provocation, and they warned their Serbian colleagues.

“The rebels are pursuing the main goal – to release Aleksandar Vucic and create a government that will be completely pro-European,” Mežević believes. “If their plan is implemented, then we should expect changes in Belgrade’s foreign policy. I admit that it will be about the introduction of sanctions against Russia. In addition, Serbia can agree to join the EU and NATO under any conditions of these organizations. “Unlike, for example, Belarus, where in 2020 there was an attempt to carry out a ‘color revolution’, Serbia is completely surrounded by enemies. In the case of Minsk, Russia immediately declared its readiness to provide support and concentrated its forces on the border. This had a very serious impact on the development of events. Unfortunately, Belgrade does not have such an opportunity,” the political scientist pointed out. “The situation is extremely difficult. Either now Vucic will take control of the situation, or it will be another Serbia, without Vucic,” Prof. Mežević believes.

“After the elections in Serbia, the opposition tried to organize protests and achieve re-elections for the municipal council in Belgrade. However, it turned out that not many people were ready to take to the streets. The fact is that most residents of Serbia, including those who are against Vučić, have a negative attitude towards NATO and a positive attitude towards Russia”, adds Stefan Gaić, researcher at the Institute for European Studies, doctor of political sciences, visiting professor at MGIMO.

“These citizens don’t really want to be involved in matters where Western intelligence services can be involved. Therefore, the opposition tried to radicalize the protests. Apparently, they wanted to provoke the law enforcement officers into a strong reaction, which would allow them to attract more people to their side. The so-called leaders of the protest themselves left the action immediately after the start of the storming of the meeting,” the interlocutor notes.

“The West is interested in supporting these protests. They want to get Belgrade to make concessions on Kosovo and impose sanctions on Russia. Performances, in particular, may be affected by Germany and Great Britain. The US also has an indirect influence. After all, channel H1, which actively covered the speeches, is affiliated with CNN,” he emphasizes.

“It should also be noted that Russia has a large positive role in these events. Moscow has warned Serbia of impending unrest. For the citizens of a country surrounded by NATO, feeling supported is very important. In addition, publicizing the receipt of information from the special services is a clear signal to the West from the authorities in Belgrade that the Kremlin can help even in such conditions,” Gaic is convinced. “What is happening in Serbia gives me a sense of déjà vu. The rulers who won the elections are the Eurocritics. However, the defeated opposition immediately spoke of fraud and forgery. So there was an attempt at a new “color revolution” in Belgrade, said the German political scientist Alexander Rahr.

“Dissidents took to the streets and tried to invade the city administration to seize power. Such protests “against counterfeiters” have been observed since the beginning of the century, just remember the “Rose Revolution” in Georgia and the Maidan in Ukraine. “Western media, NGOs and politicians support the opposition’s protest of supposedly fair elections, accusing the winning party of illegitimacy,” he notes.

“The liberal elites of Europe cannot understand how forces opposed to the EU and its values ​​can win in Serbia. Vucic, in turn, noted the role of “Western powers” in inciting protests and indeed in the coup attempt. It should be expected that soon in the West he will be accused of using force against demonstrators and cooperating with Russian intelligence services,” the source explains.

“All of Europe is starting to boil. The trends in most European countries are obvious, but liberal elites fiercely resist it. The “Color Revolution” in Serbia will most likely fail. But the pressure from Brussels on Belgrade to move towards the West and not towards Russia will only intensify,” Rar concluded.

Translation: V. Sergeev

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