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Say No to NATO, They Owe Us Blood – Former Montenegrin President

© AP Photo / Dimitri MessinisFlames from an explosion light up the Belgrade skyline near a power station after NATO cruise missiles and warplanes attacked Yugoslavia late Wednesday, March 24, 1999
Flames from an explosion light up the Belgrade skyline near a power station after NATO cruise missiles and warplanes attacked Yugoslavia late Wednesday, March 24, 1999 - Sputnik International
Former Montenegrin president Momir Bulatovic told Sputnik that Montenegrins have not forgotten the suffering unleashed by NATO military action against the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.

Montenegro's Prime Minister Milo Djukanovic, right, speaks and gestures after talks with NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg, in Podgorica, Montenegro, Thursday, June 11, 2015 - Sputnik International
Gag Law: Montenegrin PM Shuts Up Anti-NATO Voices
The NATO bombings of 1999 are strong in the memory of Montenegrins, and the level of popular support for joining the military alliance is widely overestimated, said former president of Montenegro Momir Bulatovic on Thursday.

"In the so-called public debate about this issue, it is possible to hear the voice only of well-paid officials and an avalanche of inaccurate information about Montenegro, and NATO itself," Bulatovic told Sputnik in an exclusive interview.

"NATO has to know that in Montenegro there is a huge number of people who consider this military alliance a criminal organization which contrary to the stipulations of international law and far from reason, right and moral, kills people across the planet and destroys numerous countries," said Bulatovic.

НАТО Црној Гори дугује крв!

Posted by Sputnik Србијa on Thursday, 15 October 2015

NATO owes blood to Montenegro! — The interview Momir Bulatovic gave Sputnik.

Bulatovic, who was president of Montenegro from 1990 – 1998, and then served as president of the government of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia from 1998 – 2000, reminded NATO that during the 1999 bombings of Yugoslavia, more than 30,000 Montenegrin members of the Yugoslav army offered "strong and militarily honorable resistance to its military power."

"Those are citizens of Montenegro, who have strong memories that NATO killed our people, including civilians and especially children, that it destroyed our country and poisoned our air and water."

"NATO is no kind of friend, but a military alliance which owes us blood."

On Thursday Mladen Bojanic, who sits independently in Montenegro's parliament, warned of the risks to Montenegrin society, and to NATO, if the government of Montenegro goes ahead with an application to join the alliance.

"The condition for membership [of NATO] is the support of the people, and not just the government or parliament."

NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg speaks and gestures after talks with Montenegro's Prime Minister Milo Djukanovic, in Podgorica, Montenegro, Thursday, June 11, 2015 - Sputnik International
NATO Chief Urges Montenegro to Build Public Support for Membership
 Bojanic called it "incomprehensible" that the decision to invite Montenegro into the alliance should be "based on the results of disputed surveys of popular opinion, and not on the democratic decision of all citizens of Montenegro."

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg ended a controversial two-day visit to Montenegro on Thursday, telling Montenegrin officials that the country "is taking the right steps" regarding the reforms the alliance requires the country to put in place before it decides whether it wants to issue an invite.

"I encourage you to further build public support for membership," Stoltenberg told Montenegrin politicians.

Outside the building where the meeting took place, hundreds of protestors gathered to demonstrate against the country's possible entry into the military alliance. 

Photographs from the protest were posted online.

The protestors held placards with slogans such as "Kosovo is Serbia," "This is not a NATO country," and "NATO killers, you have blood on your hands."

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