October 17, 2014

Geneva: President of Montenegro at the Crans Montana Forum
President of Montenegro Filip Vujanović took part in the panel "Securing a long-term stability in the South Eastern Europe", which was held today in the framework of the Crans Montana Forum dedicated to "Homeland and Global Security" in Geneva.

The address of the President Vujanović as follows:

Distinguished Presidents and participants of the Forum,
Dear Ambassador Carteron,
Ladies and Gentlemen,

I would like to express my appreciation to the Ambassador Jean Paul Carteron for dedicating special session to the stability in the South East Europe in the framework of this Forum. Geneva and Switzerland are, indeed, inspirational for discussion on this topic, as their history proved that long-term peace and coexistence of different nations is not an utopia, but a feasible reality.

When analyzing stability of the South East Europe, we must always have in mind that we talk about the region where extensive war conflicts took place in the last century, including both World Wars. The Balkan wars preceded the World War I. The First World War, the centenary of which has been marked this year, started in the Balkan region. The Second World War caused huge loss of lives and devastation in the South East Europe. Only 45 years after its end, new tragic conflict took place in the Balkans, so that the end of the last and beginning of this century would be remembered by victims and devastation as a result of breakup of former Yugoslavia.

Therefore, it is of vital importance to maintain the stability in South East Europe, to set stability as a long-term goal and to develop bilateral and regional cooperation based on a true commitment of all states of this part of Europe.

Certainly, security issue should never be taken as a short-term and definite accomplishment. Responsibility for security is permanent, both for the states of the region and for the international community mechanisms dedicated to global peace and stability. Open issues must be resolved patiently and through dialogue, keeping peace as the greatest value. Past events in the South East Europe remind and commit us to the above.

Regional initiatives and organizations are especially important in maintaining the peace. Partnership with them is an opportunity to join mechanisms acting preventively, and it is a great commitment of all states of the region.

Global challenges, first of all terrorism and massive violations of human rights, require a global response in order to be successfully dealt with. Therefore, having in mind current developments, the role of the United Nations is of great importance, as they should be significant mechanism for ensuring global peace and stability through empowered and strong efforts and activities.

Security integrations have a special value in peace keeping and peace building process. They should be committed to defending peace and guaranteeing the stability, thus ensuring the basis for economic and overall development of their member states.

In maintaining and affirming the security, Montenegro starts exactly from these values. It is truly and strongly committed to maintaining good-neighbourly relations.

As a member of regional initiatives and organizations, Montenegro has been and will be a reliable partner to all countries, appreciating cooperation and mutual trust as an irreplaceable mechanism for stability and development of the region.

This position was facilitated by the fact that, during dissolution of ex Yugoslavia, no war conflict or destruction took place in Montenegro, and it received tens of thousands of refugees from neighbouring countries. All of them found shelter in Montenegro, and later Montenegro enabled them either to return to their homeland, move to other countries or stay in Montenegro.

Membership to NATO is a strategic integration priority of Montenegro. We see this membership as a true guarantee of stability, but also as a framework for a stronger economic development, attaching a great political importance to it as well. Recent decision of the NATO Summit in Wales (Cardiff), gave opportunity to Montenegro to be invited to NATO before and exclusive of the Summit, which happens for the first time in the history of this integration. The Summit adopted the decision on intensified and focused dialogue with Montenegro, which is a good model for our country to receive the invitation for NATO membership next year. With this membership, all countries of the Adriatic and Mediterranean region, from Spain to Turkey, will become a part of NATO integration. Therefore, MontenegroÈs membership to NATO is important for NATO Alliance as well. Montenegro has an added value for NATO as a country that has been capable to address domestic challenges and develop a successful model of multiethnic and multi-confessional coexistence. Moreover, Montenegro has shown how to take responsibility for making tough decisions, how to make compromises and improve good-neighbourly relations. NATO membership would confirm a contribution to the stability in the South East Europe. On behalf of this stability, Montenegro supports soon NATO membership of Macedonia, wishing it to solve the issue of the name of its state with Greece as soon as possible.

In the European headquarters of the UN in Geneva, I have a special honour to point out that Montenegro has been a reliable partner to the United Nations and a constructive member of the UN Human Rights Council. I think that the role of the United Nations and its influence should certainly be empowered in times of insecurity and new challenges. This Organization, as well as the European Union, were formed after the Second World War, as visionary movements for building, keeping and affirmation of peace. The United Nations and European Union have, indeed, had a transformative role in the national and economic development of the European countries. These are the organizations that lay the foundations for peace and respect of human rights, improve security and quality of life of the citizens of their member states. Current global challenges are an opportunity for even stronger efforts of the UN, which, certainly, calls for utmost respect of founding and fundamental principles of its Charter, requiring all member states to respect and affirm peace and mechanisms for its keeping.

Thanks for your attention.

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