South Africa, Serbia to strengthen ties
30 August 2010
Serbian Foreign Minister Vuk Jeremic will be in South Africa this week, on a visit expected to strengthen economic, political and cultural relations between South Africa and Serbia.
Jeremic and South African International Relations Minister Maite Nkoana-Mashabane are expected to discuss draft agreements on waiver of visa on diplomatic and official passport holders, avoidance of double taxation, and a memorandum of understanding on law enforcement cooperation.
Education, skills development, issues related to the United Nations Security Council, and Kosovo's unilateral declaration of independence, will also be talking points during the meeting between Nkoana-Mashabane and Jeremic.
Jeremic's visit will also present a platform for the two countries to share their experiences, both from their country's and region's perspective, on issues such as peace, democratisation and development processes.
South Africa and Serbia share similar values on many international issues and have supported each other's candidatures for non-permanent seats at the United Nations Security Council and on the Human Rights Council.
"Besides its EU ambitions, Serbia is using all available diplomatic and legal means to continue to fight to preserve the territorial integrity over Kosovo and one priority is the regional relations, including protecting the rights of Serbs in the Balkans," the Department of International Relations and Cooperation said in a statement last week.
Kosovo was a southern autonomous province within Serbia before the break-up of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. The Albanian-dominated region was plunged into ethnic conflicts in 1990s.
Kosovo was placed under United Nations administration in mid-1999 and issued a unilateral declaration on independence from Serbia in February 2008.