18 Tetor 2019 13:29
Almost half of the population of Serbia believe that President Aleksandar Vucic will recognize Kosovo’s independence, according to the results of a poll presented at the Belgrade Security Forum.
The poll of 1,100 people across Serbia conducted by the Centre for Social Dialogue and Regional Initiatives (CDDRI) showed that 45 percent of the population could recognize Kosovo and that 75 percent of the polled think that recognition of Kosovo is an act of treason, according to Kossev. Poll author Nikola Jovic said that almost 60 percent said they have no idea about the president’s policy on Kosovo while 23 percent said that he will recognize Kosovo in exchange for membership in the European Union and 21 percent feel that he will recognize Kosovo if Serbia gets northern Kosovo. A total of 65 percent of the polled said that recognition of Kosovo is a condition set for EU membership and 71 percent said they would not support a decision to recognize Kosovo in exchange for EU membership.
The poll showed that 36 percent of the population would choose recognition in exchange for the four majority-Serb municipalities of northern Kosovo, a Community of Serb Municipalities (CSM) in the south and extraterritorial status for Serbian Orthodox Church monasteries. A smaller percentage (32 percent) said they would support an agreement which would not include recognition but would accept Kosovo’s membership in the UN in exchange for the CSM while just 15 percent said they would support an exchange of the four northern Kosovo municipalities for the southern Serbian municipalities of Bujanoc and Presheva both of which have ethnic Albanian populations. Just 10 percent of the polled said they would be indifferent to any decision to recognize Kosovo while the rest said they would feel sad (23 percent), betrayed (17 percent), angry (13 percent) and disappointed (12 percent) while 48 percent said they would blame Vucic and the government, nine percent said they would blame the United States, eight percent said they would blame the Serb people and foreigners in general (also eight percent). A majority of the polled are pessimistic about future developments if Belgrade and Pristina fail to reach an agreement within the next five years – 78 percent fear massive violations of Kosovo Serb rights, 74 percent expect a rise of nationalism on both sides and 72 percent said they expect a new conflict.