"We are not going to join NATO, but because we are surrounded by the Alliance member states, we want partner relations [with them]. And it is important that these relations should be sincere," Dacic said.
The foreign minister added that NATO was an "important factor of stability" in the Balkans but Serbian citizens were opposed to joining the Alliance in light of the heavy NATO bombing of now-defunct Yugoslavia in 1999.
Serbia and other former Yugoslavia republics are part of the NATO Partnership for Peace program to create trust between NATO and other European states, as well as with those of the former Soviet Union.
Serbia is also an observer state in the Parliamentary Assembly of the Russian-led Collective Security Treaty Organization and an associate member in the NATO Parliamentary Assembly.