March 23, 2023 From Media

Vučić appropriates too much maneuvering space

Tonino Picula, Croatian member of the European Parliament, was a live guest in the N1 studio where he commented on current political events.

"You can feel the hustle and bustle in Brussels, it's not just a traffic problem, it's as if time is thickening because it seems to me that EU members, entering the second year of Vladimir Putin's aggression, must find ways to strengthen their own unity, but also to speed up the delivery of everything to Ukraine what was promised. It is important to maintain political unity, but also to be quite concrete, which means a big difference between success and failure when it comes to Ukraine," said MEP Tonino Picula.

Picula states that this is now China's first-class opportunity to prove itself as a first-class political player.

"It seems to me that Xi Jinping is strengthened by the new infinite mandate that he has acquired. Going to Moscow, he wants to confirm that he is a champion in the camp of world powers that do not share the same views on democracy as Western countries. He chose Moscow quite deliberately. The numbers are merciless, China has become Russia's first foreign policy partner, and Russia is China's only 11th. The gas pipeline that should supply China with Russian gas can be freely renamed the Power of China," said Picula and added: "Russia does not have much of a choice at this moment. By choosing war against Ukraine, Putin condemned Russia to international isolation. They will depend more and more on China, but we will see how China will use its dominance. I am not sure that China is ready to fulfill every request of Putin".

Picula says that China balances its position well, but an open conflict between Beijing and Washington would seriously threaten its economic position.

"Ukraine also cares that China maintains a certain level of understanding for Kyiv. What the pessimists predicted is happening. Also, the dialogue between Serbia and Kosovo turns again into a kind of collection of monologues where everyone interprets the situation in their own favor. EU members have decided to bring this key problem to an end, but I don't know how far it will be possible. We will have to see how Brussels and Washington will continue to pressure Belgrade's political offer if Vučić does not agree to sign that contract. Vučić feels that there is still enough space to obtain certain concessions from the West. He does not impose sanctions on Russia. It seems to me that Aleksandar Vučić is allowed to have room for maneuver, which he uses abundantly in BiH and Montenegro. Because of the general political role, the West cannot return to political slumber. The collective West will have to decide," said Picula.

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