Comment 28 Jun 17

Russian Rhetoric Steps Up Intimidation of Montenegro

Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin has intensified the Kremlin’s threatening rhetoric against Montenegro over its NATO membership – but was he attempting to scare Serbia too?

Miodrag Vlahovic
BIRN
Podgorica
Dmitryi Rogozin is a Russia's Deputy Prime Minister. Photo: Beta

It was not a surprise to read Russian officials’ latest bitter and angry interpretations of the ‘Montenegrin story’.

Dmitry Rogozin, a top Kremlin official, only added a new contribution to a long list of blunt threats and insults issued against Montenegro, whose recent accession to NATO has not yet been entirely digested in Moscow. Nor it will be soon, judging by Rogozin's exotic vocabulary.

But Rogozin’s interview with the Russian-controlled Sputnik website during his visit to Belgrade for President Aleksandar Vucic’s recent inauguration ceremonies had an (un)expected new element.

Until now, various Russian officials, but also representatives of the Russian think-tank community, diplomats and some academics, have criticised the prospect of Montenegrin membership of NATO as a matter that directly confronts Russian geo-strategic interests, not only in the Western Balkans.

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