The Serbian government paid the Central African Republic Foreign Minister EUR 300,000 to withdraw recognition of Kosovo, according to a local investigation.
As reported by CNC the current Minister, Sylvie Baipo Temon accepted the money from the Serbian government following a meeting in Paris. In 2008, official recognition of Kosovo as its own country had been given by Foreign Minister General Antoine Gambi under Prime Minister Faustin Archange Touadera.
It is alleged that the Paris meeting took place in mid-July between Temon and Mr Vladimir, a special advisor to the Serbian Minister of Foreign Affairs Ivica Dacic. During their discussion, Vladimir offered the sum of EUR 300,000 (200 million CFA francs) in return for a letter revoking the recognition of Kosovo.
The letter was paraded on Serbian television by the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs as a victory.
Dacic said: “The Central African Republic became the fourteenth country that clarified its position that it does not recognize the independence of Kosovo.”
He even went as far as to claim that CAR had never recognized the independence of Kosovo to begin with and that the number of states that do recognize it has fallen below 100, adding “our goal is to keep it below half of the UN member states.”
Serbia is accused of lobbying states with weak democracies as easy pickings to reduce the number of countries that recognize Kosovo as an independent country.
If the investigation by CNC is correct, it would appear that this ‘lobbying’ also includes bribing government officials.
According to reports, it seems that the foreign ministry, the Prime Minister, and the Council of Ministers in the Central African Republic were not consulted on the decision taken by Temon. They claim that Temon took the decision alone, plunging the country into a “diplomatic trap”.
Temon has also been accused of trafficking false diplomatic passports to members of her domestic staff including her nanny and maid.