Serbia and Kosovo fail to agree on conflict resolution – Borrell
The European Union announced the failure of the negotiations between Serbia and Kosovo held in Brussels.
Serbian President Alexander Vučić and the Prime Minister of the partially recognized state of Kosovo, Albin Kurti, failed to reach an agreement in Brussels.
The talks were held in the presence of EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Josep Borrell and EU representative for dialogue between Belgrade and Pristina Miroslav Lajcak.
Borrell confirmed that today it was not possible to reach an agreement between Kosovo and Serbia on license plates and documents for entry and exit.
But he said that he would not give up and that there was still time until September 1, when the Kosovo's decision on mandatory Kosovo license plates and travel documents for the Serbian population of North Kosovo.
“We have seen tensions over license plates and travel documents for citizens traveling between Kosovo and Serbia. The international community does not want to see new tensions anytime soon. The parties have been given to understand that they will bear full responsibility for the escalation of the situation on the ground.” “Unfortunately, today we have not yet reached an agreement, I say with regret, but this is not the end. Both leaders agreed that the process must continue and discussions will continue in the coming days. There is still time until September 1. I am not giving up. We must look for a solution,” Borrell said.
He warned Belgrade and Pristina that both countries need to find an understanding in order to join the EU.
“We are in critical times for Europe, we see the return of war to our continent after the Russian occupation of (part. – Ed.) Ukraine. Now is not the time to increase tension. It's time to look for a solution to open issues,” the European diplomat said.
Why the conflict occurred
As the authorities of partially recognized Kosovo announced, from August 1, Serbian documents will cease to be valid in the territory under their control, and their owners will be issued a temporary certificate at the entrance. At the same time, the mandatory re-registration of cars with Serbian license plates to RKS (“Republic of Kosovo”) license plates was to begin.
This decision aroused indignation among the population of Northern Kosovo, the majority of whom are ethnic Serbs. Belgrade does not recognize the RKS number on its territory. Protests broke out in the region.
The Kosovo authorities have postponed the procedure for imposing a ban on Serbian documents until September 1, because of which a conflict arose with the Serbian population in the north of the partially recognized country.
Note that as a result of the 1999 war between Serbs and Albanians, Kosovo came under UN control. In 2008, the region unilaterally declared independence, which is not recognized by many countries, including Ukraine. The ethnic majority of Kosovo are Albanians, making up over 90% of the total population. At the same time, in the north of Kosovo, in the region of Kosovska Mitrovica, the majority of the population is Serbs.
Recall that the conflict between Serbia and Kosovo threatened to escalate into a serious war. Why TSN.ua understood.