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26 Feb, 2008 05:47

Presidential favourite welcomed in Belgrade

Russia's Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev has visited Hungary and Serbia, signing agreements in the area of energy co-operation. Both countries are taking part in the South Stream gas pipeline project which will provide supplies of Russian gas to Eas

Investments into the energy sector of the two countries are expected to reach five billion U.S. dollars.

It was the first visit to Serbia by a foreign official since Kosovo separated a week ago.

Medvedev promised there would be no shift in Russia's support for Serbia's demand for territorial integrity. He also said Kosovo's secession breaks international law and therefore Russia will firmly stand by Serbia. Russia's Deputy Prime Minister added that Serbia and Russia will keep trying to resolve the Kosovo issue.

In the meantime Serbia's Prime Minister Vojislav Kostunica expressed his gratitude to Russia for its support and once again reiterated that Serbia would never recognise Kosovo as an independent state. Kostunica thanked all the countries around the globe who didn't do that either.

Medvedev denounced the western backing of Kosovo independence and warned NATO and the EU that they should not use force against Serbs in Kosovo.