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Serbia Moves Back to Center Stage

Thursday, Nov. 19, 2009

After years as a sidelined figure on the European political stage, Serbia is now attracting growing attention from both West and East.

While continuing to line up its bid for European Union membership, Serbia is also the focus of Russia's renewed interest in the Balkans. In October, Belgrade signed deals with Moscow that include support for a controversial oil pipeline, a generous loan deal and the establishment of a Russian base in Serbia that has the potential for military use. Some even see Serbia's deepening ties with Russia as inimical to its pro-Western stance. But for the time being, Serbia's canny government is strengthening its own position through what amounts to a balancing act. ...

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