Serbian Nationalists to Make Alliance

04 November 2008 Belgrade – Three Serbian nationalist parties including that of former Prime Minister Vojislav Kostunica say they are ready to create a new alliance to challenge the current coalition government.

The Democratic Party of Serbia, DSS, New Serbia, NS, and the new People’s Party, NP, will soon sign a Declaration on Joint Political Action “motivated by our wish to spark changes in Serbia as soon as possible and to establish new government,” Andreja Mladenovic, a DSS spokesman said.

“The new government should be conducting a nationally-responsible policy in the interest of all in Serbia,” Mladenovic told Balkan Insight.

The Democratic Party of Serbia is headed by Vojislav Kostunica, the country’s former Prime Minister, while the New Serbia is led by Velimir Ilic, former Infrastructure Minister in Kostunica’s Cabinet until the snap May elections. The People’s Party is headed by Maja Gojkovic, a former official of the Serbian Radical Party, and an ex-mayor of the northern city of Novi Sad.

Kostunica’s cabinet collapsed in March over disagreements between his loyalists and other pro-Western ministers loyal to President Boris Tadic over whether the government in Belgrade should sign a European Union pre-membership deal called the Stabilisation and Association Agreement.

Kostunica wanted Brussels to first confirm that Kosovo, which had declared independence a month earlier, is an integral part of Serbia.

According to pollsters all three parties are currently trailing below the 5 percent threshold of voters’ support which is required for entering the parliament.

The DSS and NS currently hold 21 and 9 mandates in the 250-seat parliament.

Gojkovic’s party was formed only recently by disenchanted members of the Serbian Radical Party, SRS, from Vojvodina.

The creation of the new alliance comes after Tomislav Nikolic, a nationalist, split from the Radicals and formed the Progressive Party comprised of other disenchanted Radical Party members who opposed policies of its leader Vojislav Seselj who is on a war crimes trial before the United Nations tribunal at The Hague in the Netherlands.

Nikolic’s own parliamentary faction currently holds 20 seats in parliament.

Belgrade-based analysts say that the three parties move is aimed at solidifying Serbia’s political right and creating a foothold for an alliance with Nikolic in the future parliamentary elections slated for 2012.

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