State and politics
According to the constitution, Serbia is a state based on
"European values", where the executive power belongs to the
president, who is elected for five years. Admittedly, the
president has limited powers of power can still exert great
influence over Serbian politics. The legislative power lies
in a single-chamber parliament (Narodna Skupština Srbije)
with 250 members, elected for four years.
The first free elections in December 1990 were largely
won by the Socialist Party (SPS), that is, the
Reformed Communist Party, whose leader Slobodan Milošević
simultaneously won in the Serbian presidential election.
After Milošević has served his two permitted terms of
office, he was succeeded in 1997 by Milan Milutinović in the
post of Serbian president. Milošević instead went on to win
the election of federal Yugoslav president. Also see AbbreviationFinder for abbreviation of SCG and its meanings of Serbia.
In connection with the NATO bombings against Yugoslavia
during the 1999 Kosovo conflict, political tension in the
sub-republic increased. Zoran Đinđić, the leader of the
Democratic Party (DS), began organizing the opposition
with a view to enforcing the resignation of the government
and announcing new elections. The political conflict
culminated in the federal presidential and parliamentary
elections in September 2000, when Serbia's democratic
opposition (DOS, comprising 18 parties with the DS at
the head) defeated Milošević and his socialist party in both
the presidential and parliamentary elections.
Following Milošević's fall in 2000, relatively liberal
and reform-friendly party coalitions have been in power, but
their position has not been obvious. The 18-party DOS
alliance could not be held together in the long run, partly
because of personal contradictions, and for a long time the
Nationalist and Populist Radical Party (RS) was the
largest single party in parliament. In the 2004 and 2008
presidential elections, Tadić won by just a margin over
party leader Tomislav Nikolić.
However, the RS subsequently became marginalized after
Nikolić took large parts of this and formed a new party, the
Progressive Party (SNS), which unlike SRS wants to
see Serbia as a member of the EU. Although the SNS is also a
nationalist party, it is said above all to fight for social
justice in the crisis-hit Serbia.
In the spring 2012 parliamentary elections, SNS became
the largest single party and came to form the backbone of
the coalition government that was eventually formed under
Ivica Dačić, leader of Milošević's old Socialist Party
(SPS), which has now shrunk substantially but gained a new,
more reform-friendly leadership.
The party was part of the DS-led government established
after the 2008 parliamentary elections. Most people had
expected a new DS-led government under the outgoing
President Boris Tadić after the 2012 election, but the
Socialist Party chose instead to cooperate with the SNS. One
contributing reason was that, in May 2012, Tomislav Nikolić
won, somewhat surprisingly, the earlier presidential
election in a second, decisive round. For the first time
since Milošević's fall in 2000, Serbia came to have a
completely nationalist leadership.
SNS's hope of further strengthening the party's position
to make it difficult to implement difficult reforms led to a
new election to Parliament in March 2014.
The party also managed to get close to half of the votes
and 158 of Parliament's 250 seats, while the Socialist
Party, SPS, received 13.5 percent and 44 seats. Three small
parties among the country's minorities split into eleven
places. In addition, only two parties passed the five
percent blockade to Parliament: the Democratic Party, DS,
which got 19 seats and the New Democratic Party (Nova
Democratic Stranka, NDS) which received 18 seats; the
parties each got about 6 percent of the votes.
Even before the successful 2014 elections, SNS had been
the largest party in parliament. It now also ruled all major
cities and there were those who warned that the party was
gaining too much power.
The party's election success from 2014 was repeated in
the 2016 parliamentary elections and in the 2017
presidential election when the party leader and the
country's prime minister Aleksandar Vučić, who was expecting
to win. He already won in the first round of the elections
with over 50 percent of the vote without meeting any real
opposition from the country's divided opposition.
Aleksandar Vučić was Minister of Information under
Slobodan Milošević's government, where he played a key role
in the government's work in silencing regime-critical media.
Vučić's political history as well as ever-increasing powers
of power became the subject of debate before the 2017
election, though without being reflected in the election
Vučićs is expected to use his new position of power to
continue to bring Serbia closer to EU membership and at the
same time maintain the historically strong ties to the
The attitude towards the EU and Kosovo are issues that
have aroused, and aroused, strong feelings between and
within the political parties. However, most parties, some
more reluctant than others, have been favorably positioned
in the EU. In December 2009, the Serbian government applied
for full EU membership, in March 2012 Serbia was granted
candidate status and in January 2014 membership negotiations
with the EU began. However, these were not expected to be
completed until 2020.
One EU demand was that Serbia should establish good
relations with Kosovo, the Serbian province which declared
its independence on February 17, 2008. However, the EU did
not require Serbia to recognize Kosovo. With the help of the
EU, the Serbian and Kosovan Prime Ministers initiated talks,
which in April 2013 resulted in an agreement in which Serbia
for the first time acknowledged Kosovo's supremacy over the
Serb-dominated northern Kosovo against allowing it