US State Department Counselor Derek Chollet, who will meet Serbian authorities today in Belgrade, asked the Government of Kosovo to give some autonomy to the Serb minority in the country fulfilling the 2013 agreement, in which the European Union mediated.
“Kosovo must fulfill all the commitments of the dialogue, including the formation of the association of municipalities with a Serb majority,” Chollet said in Pristina this Thursday (12.01.2023), according to the portal of Radio Free Europe.
“We are at a critical moment. Kosovo and Serbia must urgently continue the dialogue sponsored by the EU, which is working for a comprehensive agreement to normalize relations, focused on mutual recognition”, he stated.
Serbia and its former province of Kosovo, which proclaimed its independence in 2008 but which Belgrade does not recognize, have maintained a difficult normalization dialogue since 2011 mediated by the EU and marked by constant crises and tensions.
Chollet stressed that “the United States fully supports this dialogue.”
The US diplomat visits the region after last December the Kosovar Serbs, backed by Belgrade, block traffic in northern Kosovo for almost three weeks to denounce the growing discrimination they claim to suffer from the Government of Pristina.
The serious tensions were overcome with international mediation.
According to the Kosovar portal Kossev, Chollet expressed his concern about the situation in the northwhere there is a security vacuum after the withdrawal of the Serbs from the Police, Judiciary and other institutions of Kosovo last November due to their discontent with Pristina’s policy with that minority.
“We have dealt with the way that people can return to their jobs,” said Chollet, who also called on Pristina and Belgrade to refrain from any provocation affecting the normalization process.
“We want to invest more energy in European integrationsand less in crisis management, ”he warned.
Progress in the dialogue is a crucial condition for the rapprochement of both countries to the EU.
Chollet met in Kosovo with the president, Vjosa Osmani, the prime minister, Albin Kurti, representatives of the opposition and the Serb minority.
Today in Belgrade, his meetings with the highest Serbian authorities are scheduled.
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Source: La Opinion