In late November, the Russian Foreign Ministry announced that Lavrov’s working visit to the Balkan country will take place On December 12-13. The Serbian side later said that the main purpose of the visit is to attend the upcoming BSEC foreign ministers’ meeting, currently chaired by Serbia, and denied reports that the visit may be linked to recent disturbances in neighboring Montenegro.

 

Lavrov

 

In Belgrade he [Lavrov] will be received by the state’s president, prime minister and hold talks with the foreign minister,” Russian Foreign Minister’s spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said in November.

 

She said the Russian minister would discuss the entire range of bilateral relations and exchange opinions with Serbian top officials on urgent issues on the international agenda.

 

In early December, Serbian Foreign Minister Ivica Dacic refuted media reports saying that the visit has connection to the foiled coup in Montenegro.

 

On October 16, on the parliamentary elections day in Montenegro, 20 people were detained and 14 of them were arrested for planning to conduct attacks, targeting both civilian population and high-ranking officials, as well as seizing the parliament’s building. Montenegro’s prosecutor Milivoje Katnic later alleged that “nationalists from Russia” planned to stage a government overthrow but added that there was no evidence for the Russian government involvement.