Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov has been forced to cancel a two-day visit to Serbia after Montenegro, North Macedonia and Bulgaria closed their airspace to his plane, reports said Sunday.
Lavrov had been set to visit Serbia’s capital Belgrade from June 6 -7 and hold talks with President Aleksandar Vucic.
Vucic on Monday morning held a meeting with Russian Ambassador Aleksandar Bocan-Harcenko regarding the three countries’ decision.
"Ambassador of the Russian Federation Bocan-Kharchenko informed me about the reasons that prevented the arrival of Minister Lavrov in Belgrade and brought documents that support that. I will talk more about everything on RTS1 (Radio Television of Serbia), " said the Serbian leader after the meeting.
This would have been the first visit of a high-ranking Russian official to Serbia since the start of the Ukrainian war and at a time when the European Union is preparing a new series of sanctions against Moscow.
Last Sunday, the Serbian leader announced a new three-year gas supply contract with Russia.
The deal was likely to have been signed during Lavrov's visit.
Belgrade's current 10-year gas supply contract with Russian energy giant Gazprom expires on Tuesday.