03. Sept. 2008

Fonet News Agency

There is no democracy without parliament

BELGRADE - 03.09.2008

We will try to do all we can for Serbia to get Europe’s support necessary for progress, but Serbia must do its part of the job, rapporteur of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe Andreas Gross said.

Gross told reporters that there is a new leap in Serbian politics, but to sustain it, apart from Europe’s help, Serbia needs to have its own initiative. During his visit to Belgrade, he met ambassadors, representatives of the non-governmental organisations and all parliamentary groups, except Serbian Radical Party, which rejected the invitation for the meeting without explaining why.

«I do not want to use the word blockade, because one of the three opposition parties does not believe that they are blocking it, but it could be said that the Parliament is not conducting its duty. If the Parliament, as the most important institution of democracy besides the citizens, cannot conduct its duty, then the democracy cannot work», Gross said. «Opposition must be very strong, but they cannot block the parliament’s mechanism», he said adding that the majority in the parliament was elected in the legitimate elections and must have the opportunity to use its rights to make decisions.

«Serbia has difficulties with democracy, but it held elections even better than some of the European Union members», he emphasised. «The EU is currently in a difficult situation. Its capacity for enlargement is not increasing, but Serbia should not be a victim of this crisis», Gross said emphasising that the EU accession will be a «process of several years, not several months».

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