The former prime minister of Montenegro, Milo Djukanovic, was regularly accused of corruption by members of the opposition, but these accusations were never substantiated.
On the subject of the alleged assassination plot, Djukanovic suggested that the real target was something bigger than himself.
"The target was not Milo Djukanovic as such, but the legitimate prime minister who is taking his country into the EU and NATO," he said. "They wanted to send a message to others [in the Balkans] as well. Having in mind that most countries in the region are currently at different stages of Euro-Atlantic integration, the message was that they would not be allowed to make those decisions based on their national interests."
Djukanovic also said that we "can only speculate" about allegations that Russia was involved in the foiled October plot.
Nonetheless, he added that "Moscow officials had been issuing warnings to Montenegro to stay away from NATO, arguing that it would destabilize the country."
Acknowledging that Podgorica finds itself on the brink of NATO accession at a time of fraught international relations and rising tensions in the Balkans, Djukanovic indicated that Montenegro was still correct to pursue membership in the alliance, saying that the country was now "in the right place at the wrong time."