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While some Serbian officials say the sternly worded report presents a true picture of the situation, others have reacted much more defensively.
Serbian officials are split on how to respond to a critical EU report on the country, which cited limited progress in internal reforms and demanded an improvement in relations with Kosovo.
Suzana Grubjesic, Deputy Prime Minister for European Integration, said the report was not positive or negative but an objective assessment of the state of the implementation of reforms over the past year.
Grubjesic said that Serbia would continue aligning its legislation to European standards and would discuss with EU officials how to achieve progress in normalising relations with Kosovo, whose independence Serbia has vowed not to recognise.
Nebojsa Stefanovic, the speaker of parliament, also said that the report represented the true situation in the country.
"The report is balanced and I think Serbia has a great opportunity to reach its goal next year and move to the next step towards joining the EU," Stefanovic said on Wednesday.
Milica Delevic, head of the parliamentary committee for European integration, agreed that the report's content came as no surprise.
Serbia has shifted away from work on EU must-do tasks since March, when the general, local and presidential election campaign started.
An opposition leader, Cedomir Jovanovic, head of the centrist and pro-EU Liberal Democratic Party, went further, saying that if the Brussels report sounded negative, it was right to do so.
"The European Commission has diagnosed the selfish ambitions of Serbian President Tomislav Nikolic and the ruling coalition," Jovanovic told Serbia's Tanjug news agency.
He said that the report's downbeat tone reflected the failures of the previous, Democrat-led government, which had constantly delayed work on necessary reforms.
However, the Foreign Minister, Ivan Mrkic, has sounded a more defensive tone, saying the report was one-sided.
“It is disappointing that the text, which should reflect the political views of all EU member countries, including those that have not recognized the secession of the southern Serbian province [of Kosovo], reveals formulations that do not reflect reality on the ground and are fundamentally opposed to the interests of our country and people,” he said.
Mrkic was referring to the part of the document that urges respect for the territorial integrity of Kosovo.
Vojislav Kostunica, the leader of the opposition nationalist Democratic Party of Serbia, said that Serbia should "unequivocally" dismiss Europe's demands on Kosovo.
"No country in Europe would accede to a demand to respect the territorial integrity of a portion of its own territory," he said, referring to the fact that Serbia's 2006 constitution claims Kosovo as part of Serbia.
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