Lavrov Cancels Serbia Trip After Balkan Neighbors Refuse Clearance Of Plane

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has been forced to cancel a trip to Serbia after some of its Balkan neighbors refused to open their airspace to the minister’s plane over Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine.

“The countries around Serbia have closed the channel of communication by refusing to authorize the overflight of the plane of Sergei Lavrov, who was headed to Serbia,” ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova was quoted by Russian state news agencies as saying on June 6.

Zakharova did not mention the specific countries that closed their airspace to Lavrov, but the Interfax news agency quoted a senior Foreign Ministry official as saying Bulgaria, North Macedonia, and Montenegro — all members of the NATO security alliance — were the countries involved.

Lavrov was expected to hold meetings with several high-ranking Serbian officials, including President Aleksandar Vucic and Serbian Patriarch Porfirije.

One of the main topics on the agenda was Russian energy supplies to Serbia. The two nations recently signed a three-year agreement on natural gas supplies. Moscow has cut supplies to some European countries that have refused to use a mechanism set up in Russia to pay for energy in rubles.

Even though Belgrade has condemned Russia’s war against Ukraine, launched on February 24, it has not joined the European Union and many Western allies in slapping sanctions on Russia and most of its leadership.

Moscow and Belgrade have long been close allies enjoy longstanding close ties.

With reporting by TASS and Interfax

https://www.rferl.org/a/lavrov-cancels-serbia-trip-balkan-neighbors-refuse-plane/31885272.html

2 comments

  1. Welcome to the new reality Lavrov. Although I suspect this was just another propaganda exercise by this scumbag, to see if NATO countries would refuse entry for this flight.

    Liked by 4 people

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