Outgoing US Ambassador to Serbia Kyle Scott claimed that 1999 and the US bombing of Serbia should be viewed from a “broader perspective.”
In his interview, Scott was asked how he views the fact that a fair share of Serbians still have more negative than positive feelings about the US, primarily because of the NATO bombing, and how that can be changed.
In answer, he said was well aware of this and that maybe he would feel the same if he were in their shoes – but that neither Serbia nor the United States can turn back the clock.
“Relations between the United States and Serbia in the past were mostly good, except for the 1990s and the events that took place under Milosevic’s rule. 20 years have passed since then, it is time to move forward and improve our relations, we have a very good foundation for such progress. Namely, we share a common vision that Serbia belongs to the European Union,” he added, and pointed out that Serbia and the United States are connected by “strong historical and cultural ties”.
On March 24th, 1999, and lasting until June 10th NATO began a military operation against the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.
NATO leadership claimed that prevention of genocide of the Albanian population in Kosovo was the main reason behind the operation called Allied Force.
NATO said that during the 78-day operation its aircraft flew 38,000 sorties to carry out 10,000 bombing strikes.
The operation was not approved by the UN Security Council and the US primarily took authority and led the attacks.
Military experts have found that the alliance launched 3,000 cruise missiles and dropped 80,000 bombs, including cluster bombs and low-enriched uranium bombs. According to Serbian forces, the bombardments killed 3,500-4,000 and injured 10,000 others, two thirds of them civilians.
According to Serbian experts, NATO dropped 15 tons of depleted uranium over the three months of bombings to make the country Europe’s number one in terms of cancer cases.
About 30,000 new cancer cases were registered in the first ten years after the bombings, with the lethality rate from 10,000 to 18,000 patients.
TASS cited Ljubisa Rakic, a Serbian scientist and a member of the Serbian, Russian, New York, Eurasian, European and other academies.
According to her estimations, the amount of low-enriched uranium dropped by NATO on the Balkans was enough to make 170 A-bombs like the one that was dropped by the United States on Japan’s Hiroshima on August 6th, 1945.
The statement by the outgoing US Ambassador is absurd and the height of hypocrisy. It shows no sense of repentance, there was no statement that disavows the incident.
It simply said “it happened, get over it.”
In comment, Russian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Maria Zakharova said that the US may hope for better relations only after it officially issues an apology for what transpired in 1999.
“The United States must apologize for bombing the former Yugoslavia back in 1999 and pay compensation to the relatives of those killed and injured in the US-backed NATO air raids, and then they could ask others to look into the future”, Zakharova said.
💬 #Мнение М.В.Захаровой | #Opinion by Maria Zakharova:СМИ: «*Посол США в Белграде призвал сербов «шире смотреть» на…
The chairman of the Federation Council Commission on Information Policy Alexey Pushkov in his Twitter called the words of the American diplomat “incredible cynicism.”
“The US ambassador to Serbia called on the Serbs to look at the 1999 NATO bombing” from a broader perspective. ” That is, go to the square and amicably give praise to the United States for being bombed. Incredible cynicism. Let the Americans say “look wider” at the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor,” Pushkov said.
Посол США в Сербии призвал сербов смотреть на натовские бомбардировки 1999 г. «в более широкой перспективе». Т.е. выйти на площади и дружно воздать хвалу США за то, что бомбили. Невероятный цинизм. Пусть американцам скажет «пошире посмотреть» на атаку японцев на Пирл-Харбор.
— Алексей Пушков (@Alexey_Pushkov) September 15, 2019
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