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Serbia´s first openly gay prime minister prepares to take office

16 June 2017

President Aleksandar Vucic announced Ana Brnabic is his official nomination as Prime Minister-designate.

But it has been eager to show increased tolerance after coming under pressure to improve protection for minorities, including the LGBT community, since it began talks to join the European Union.

Born in Belgrade in 1975, according to her CV published on the web portal of the Ministry of Public Administration, she obtained a master's degree in marketing from Hull University, in the United Kingdom, and has more than ten years of experience in working with global organisations, foreign investors, local governments and the public sector in Serbia.

Belgrade's Gay Pride march was banned for three years in succession on grounds of public safety after far-right protesters attacked the event in 2010.

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In interviews after she became a minister a year ago, Brnabic expressed the hope that people would look beyond her sexual orientation.

She is expected to take office in the next few weeks.

Vucic said there will be some changes in the cabinet, that will be revealed during the weekend, and that "one or two" new ministries will be created, Tanjug is reporting.

Vucic has moved into the largely ceremonial presidential position. The 250-seat parliament will debate Brnabic's nomination next week.

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"Naming Brnabic as a non-partisan is Vucic's concession to the West and contrary to Russian expectations", Bosko Jaksic, an independent foreign policy analyst at the New Policy Center in Belgrade, said by phone.

'I believe she has professional skills and personal qualities, ' Vucic tells the Associated Press.

Although the role of prime minister is the most powerful constitutionally, Vucic is nearly universally seen as retaining a grip on power via his leadership of the ruling Serbian Progressive party and his influence in various organs of state.

Serbia has just got an openly lesbian Prime Minister in a duo of firsts.

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The premier-designate entered politics after a career in the business sector and local development programmes.

Serbia´s first openly gay prime minister prepares to take office