Russian Foreign Minister Maria Zakharova has said that European countries around Serbia have closed their airspace for the plane of Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov.
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“Today (…), the neighboring countries of Serbia closed the communication channel and refused to authorize the flight of Sergei Lavrov’s flight to Serbia,” Ms Zakharova announced on Sunday evening, quoting Russian news agencies. , To the Italian television channel La7.
“The Russian delegation is due to arrive in Belgrade for talks. But the EU and NATO member states have closed their airspace, ”he added.
According to the Serbian daily Vecernje Novosti, these include Serbia’s three neighbors: Bulgaria, northern Macedonia and Montenegro.
According to a Russian diplomatic source quoted by Interfax news agency, the Russian minister’s visit has been canceled.
“Russian diplomacy has not yet learned how to teleport,” the source explained.
For his part, the Deputy Speaker of the Council of the Upper House, the upper house of the Russian parliament, Konstantin Kosatchev, on Monday morning condemned the closure of the airspace for Mr Lavrov’s plane as “a state directed by Russia and a state directed against Serbia.”
“I hope the response will be normal and very serious, not only in the form of diplomatic protests, but also to practical, definite actions,” Mr Kozatchev wrote in a telegram.
Serbia’s head of government Ana Branabic said on Sunday that the situation surrounding the visit was “exceptionally critical” due to the impossibility of overflight in some countries and that Serbian President Alexander Vusic himself was working on tour management.
Like Russian President Vladimir Putin, EU sanctions have targeted Sergei Lavrov since February 25, the day after the invasion of Ukraine.
Mr Lavrov is scheduled to meet with the Serbian President, his Serbian counterpart Nicola Selakovic and the Serbian Orthodox Church Porfirize Patriarch in Belgrade.