Serbia says it wants EU membership, but won't impose sanctions on Russia

Economic Indicators Associated Press

Serbia's prime minister says the Balkan country will not impose sanctions against Russia or curb its food exports despite pressure from the European Union.

Continue Reading Below

After the U.S. and the EU slapped sanctions on Russian state banks and major industries last month over the crisis in Ukraine, Russia responded with a wide-ranging ban on food products imported from those countries.

Serbia, a traditional Russian ally which is seeking EU membership, is hoping to capitalize on Russia's ban by increasing its exports.

Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic said Friday his government will accept the EU's demands not to additionally subsidize those exports, but will not prevent Serbian companies from making the deals.

The EU has warned candidate countries to refrain from "exploiting" the Russian ban by increasing their exports.