U.S. flag flies at the U.S. embassy in Havana, Cuba, March 18, 2019 days after the U.S. State Department announced it was eliminating a five-year tourist visa for Cubans.InternationalIndiaAfricaBELGRADE (Sputnik) – Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic said on Thursday that Washington purchases between one-fourth and one-third of Serbia’s defense industry products that may end up in Ukraine. US media reported in mid-April, citing the leaked Pentagon documents, that the Serbian authorities had already sent weapons to Ukraine and were ready to transfer more. Later, in a conversation with Sputnik, Serbian Defense Minister Milos Vucevic called such reports untrue. Vucic said on April 13 that Serbia has not and will not supply Ukraine with weapons and ammunition, adding that Belgrade exports defense products to authorized end users only. “We produce ammunition, we sell it when Spain, for example, asks for it. And what are we supposed to do, we sell. Could it end up in Ukraine? It could. Do we know that it could end up there – we know, but what choice do we have?” Vucic said in a televised appearance on Serbian broadcaster TV Prva.”Should we violate long-term contracts with America, which purchases a one-third, one-fourth of the ammunition – what are you people talking about, what do you even want, to close plant?” The president noted the Serbian army will be purchasing all weapons and ammunition produced in Serbia within the next three years “so that no one can tell us that our weapons are going there [to the conflict area].” Vucic also said that the West is urging Belgrade to join NATO, posing Russia as a threat, but the alliance itself is a threat to Serbia. “They tell us to join NATO because Russia will endanger everyone … We cannot join NATO because NATO has posed a threat to us,” the president said. Belgrade has repeatedly denied information about Serbia selling arms to Kiev while stressing its commitment to military neutrality. Belgrade strictly adheres to the observance of domestic and international legal acts and also avoids the supply of weapons to any state if “an outbreak or continuation of an armed conflict is possible there” and a threat to peace and security is created, the Serbian Foreign Ministry said on April 12, adding that the re-export of the Serbian weapons without the permission of Belgrade was banned.


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