Serbia's foreign minister has complained that the Balkan country faces EU pressure to join Western-backed sanctions against Russia, describing it as "absolutely unacceptable."

Ivica Dacic said in a statement on Wednesday that "Serbia wants to enter the EU but will not do anything that is against its own national interests."

Officials also have said Serbia will contribute aid to a Russian humanitarian effort for Syria, insisting the decision was not political.

Serbia formally wants to join the 28-nation European Union, but Russia's influence remains strong and Belgrade has refused to impose sanctions against the Kremlin for its role in the Ukrainian crisis.

Moscow has backed Serbia in its dispute with the West over the former province of Kosovo whose 2008 Western-backed declaration of independence Serbia has refused to recognize.