“‘We are friends with Russia, but we fully completely support territorial integrity of Ukraine. We do not support an independent Crimea. We think it’s one of these things that will open Pandora’s Box. Accession to the EU is on the top of the list of priorities of Serbia’ said Prime Minister Ana Brnabić in an interview with the magazine The Economist.

‘I keep saying that it’s not two chairs. It’s one chair, the Serbian chair. We are completely for the EU and it is our strategic goal. It’s not because of the money… it’s the of the system of values, who we want to be a part of,’  stated the Prime Minister of Serbia.

Asked how she feels when she hears that her sexual orientation ‘is very beneficial to the ruling party, because it contributed to creating the impression of cosmopolitanism and liberal attitudes to a greater extent that may not exist,’ Brnabić replied that it was an easy thing to say.

‘In order to really do that in Serbia, to be brave enough to say that perhaps it can work and that people in Serbia might turn against me, I think it was a brave political move. I think that it’s easy to criticize it  today as a publicity stunt,’ she said.

“There was no genocide in Srebrenica.”

Brnabić also emphasized that it was hard to talk about it because it would not bring reconciliation.

‘New generations are coming. We have so many things in coming. We have to look towards the future. And also, that was one of the additional controversies in my appointment is that my grandfather is Croat. My father’s father is Croat. He’s not Serb from Croatia. He’s a Croat from the island of Krka. I spend a lot of my time in my childhood there. I have many friends there. I love to go there. I go there often. I think those kind of things show that we have a lot of things in coming and that we need to look toward the future.’

She believes there was no Srebrenica in genocide, but and that it was a ‘terrible, terrible crime.’

‘It was not the action, in terms of: We will kill all the people there so that there are no more Muslims. I think that genocide, by definition, involves the killing of children, women… That did not happen in Srebrenica. It’s so difficult for me to talk about that  because it was a terrible terrible crime, a crime which I am personally feel ashamed of, because it portrayed Serbs in a way that I do not think our country should be portrayed,’ said the prime minister, adding that she thought ‘Serbs are a very open-minded, generous people. Not perhaps open-minded, but perhaps people, who, at the end of the day do not judge others on whether they are Muslims, Croats, gays, or straights, but are good people or not good people.’

‘Using the word independence would open a Pandora’s box that we could see in Catalonia today, many other countries in Europe, and the world. I think what we’re trying do is to find a long-lasting solution, not to leave the frozen conflict for the generations that are coming,’ said Brnabić and added that she hopes to find a lasting solution for Kosovo and Metohija in 2018, respectively.” (translated from Blic)

Full interview in audio form available here.