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Former head of state security agency was not a Russian agent, says Vučić

8 months ago 37

The former Head of Serbia’s Security and Information Agency (BIA), Aleksandar Vulin, was not a Russian agent and has always worked for Serbia, President Aleksandar Vučić said following Vulin’s resignation on Friday.

Vulin has long been accused of having close ties to Russia and has been called “the man of Moscow” on many occasions. In 2022, he visited Moscow and proclaimed to Sergey Lavrov, “Seria is the only state in Europe that didn’t introduce sanctions and was not part of the anti-Russian hysteria.”

In July 2023, he was sanctioned by the US Department of the Treasury for corrupt and destabilising acts that have facilitated Russia’s malign activities in the region, including drugs and arms trafficking.

In his resignation letter on Friday, Vulin, who is also the head of the co-ruling Movement of Socialists, said he was resigning to remove the danger of Western “threats and blackmails” to Vučić and Serbia over joining international sanctions against Russia.

“It’s not for me to comment on. Vulin is my friend with whom I’ve spent a lot of time, and I understand his reaction, but his head didn’t roll or anything like that. There were pressures from the very beginning when he was appointed to that position, from the first day, and it was unequivocal,” Vučić said.

“If we would agree to that, the next demand would be … the acceptance of Western values,” Vulin said.

The President of Serbia stated that everything Vulin mentioned in his letter was entirely accurate, including that it is true that there were pressures from the first day.

“I can’t continue to comment because it’s now easier for him than it is for me. I can’t continue to comment on all matters for a simple reason, because I am the President of the Republic, but also because I am obliged to keep secrets, and I cannot speak about such matters,” Vučić told Pink TV.

Vučić expressed his gratitude to Vulin for his service.

“I want to thank him for the contribution he made to preserving the security of Serbia for our country’s independence. This is one of the principles of the policy we all follow, when I say ‘we all,’ I mean the Serbian Progressive Party,” the president said.

Vulin’s resignation was one of the requests of the “Serbia against violence” protests, which have been held consistently for the last six months in Belgrade. The protests were organised by parts of the opposition and began after a mass shooting in a downtown Belgrade elementary school.

(Euractiv.rs | Jelena Jevtić)

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