“Serbia has banned Croatia’s defense minister from entering the country, a reciprocal measure against Croatia as tensions mount between the two Balkan rivals.

Serbia’s government on Thursday imposed the ban against Croatia’s Damir Krsticevic. Last week Zagreb said Serbia Defense Minister Aleksandar Vulin was not welcome.

A statement says the move was a ‘reciprocity measure.’

Last Sunday, Croatia accused Vulin of undermining its sovereignty with a statement in which he said Zagreb had no authority to decide on whether he could visit Croatia or not.” (New Europe)

“The Ministry of Culture has announced today that Serbia will be the honorary guest at the International Book Fair in Tehran, to be held from 1 to 4 May.

Minister of Culture and Media Vladan Vukosavljevic will speak at the opening of the Fair on 1 May, while ‘Days of Serbia’ and the stand of the Republic of Serbia will be officially opened on May 2, the government announced on Friday.” (B92)


“Patients in Serbia, Bosnia or Macedonia who need medical treatment are forced to join long waiting lists, or pay up. DW looks at the parallel world of private clinics that exist alongside the broken state health systems.

‘A private clinic can take care of that.’ In the Western Balkan states, people in need of medical attention are often told to go to a private clinic or hospital. Thirty-year-old Natasa, for example, from the city of Novi Sad in northern Serbia, recently had a tumor in the lymphatic system and actually has no time to lose. She doesn’t have the money to pay for private checkups, outside the state health insurance system. So the flyer that the doctor gives her, advertising a private practice, is not much use.

The vast majority of people in the Balkans, like Natasa, are dependent on the public health care system. With an average monthly net income of €400 ($485), and an unemployment rate of over 20 percent, most people in Serbia, Bosnia and Macedonia simply can’t afford the luxury of private treatment. It is a step only taken by those who are extremely desperate and cannot risk the long wait for an appointment at a state hospital. Or if they have too much money.” (Deutsche Welle)