Russia’s ambassador to Belgrade has thanked Serbs for their “understanding of the situation in Georgia”. In a statement to Belgrade’s B92 television, Aleksandar Konuzin said Moscow was grateful for “the sympathy showed towards Russians and Russia’s citizens” during the armed conflict over the breakaway Georgia’s South Ossetia province.
However, Serbian officials have so far remained cautious over the conflict in the breakaway province of South Ossetia. Belgrade’s watchfulness reflects concerns over possible unhelpful parallels being drawn between South Ossetia and Kosovo, which declared independence from Serbia in February and has so far been recognised by 45 countries.
In a rare reaction, Serbia’s Minister for Kosovo, Oliver Ivanovic, described the South Ossetia conflict “as a direct consequence of Kosovo’s secession”. Ivanovic said Kosovo’s example was “inspiring to South Ossetia”.