EU backs new Serbian leader's reforms plan

BELGRADE, Serbia (AP) — The European Union's foreign policy chief has offered support to the new Serbian government in its bid to overhaul the economy and pursue membership in the 28-nation bloc.

Catherine Ashton held talks with Serbian Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic on Monday, a day after his Cabinet took office. She says she was "absolutely delighted I have been able to make this special visit to Serbia."

Ashton adds that "the European Union is determined to help and support Serbia in its efforts to ensure a strong economic path for its people." Vucic says he has sought EU backing "for tough and bold economic reform" in the Balkan country which went through a decade of wars and international isolation during the 1990s'. Vucic has expressed hope Serbia can join the EU in 2020.

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