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The EU demands the implementation of the Kosovo-Serbia agreements, amid deep differences between the parties regarding normalization

2024-04-19 22:42:00, Kosova & Bota CNA

The EU demands the implementation of the Kosovo-Serbia agreements, amid deep

The European Union said on Friday that the establishment of the Association of Serb-majority municipalities in Kosovo is urgent, while calling on Kosovo and Serbia to implement all the agreements reached in the talks so far. On the ground, the leaders of both parties accused each other from a distance of failing to fulfill them.

On April 19, 2013, Kosovo and Serbia agreed on the establishment of the Association, while in 2015 they agreed on its principles. But, that same year, the Constitutional Court of Kosovo found that a large part of these principles are in conflict with the Constitution of Kosovo.

In October last year, European and American diplomats submitted to the parties a draft of the Association's statute. The leaders of both countries said yes in principle to the document, but things have not moved from the country. Its establishment is part of the agreement reached between them on February 27 last year in Brussels and on March 18 in Ohrid.

The spokesperson of the European Union, Peter Stano, said on Friday that the issue of the Association is one of the essential and urgent issues and the failure to implement it "means consequences for Kosovo".

He also emphasized that all the agreements reached in the dialogue facilitated by the European Union are valid and binding documents for both parties.

"If the parties do not fulfill their obligations, then there will be serious consequences. And the only ones who will feel these consequences will be the people they claim to be protecting. Therefore, the only ones who will pay the price for not implementing the obligations will be the citizens of Kosovo and Serbia", he said.

On Friday, Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic called Pristina and the European Union "liars" for not establishing the Association, recalling that the agreement was signed 11 years ago.

"Eleven years of terror and lies of the leadership of Pristina and the European Municipality together", he said.

The Prime Minister of Kosovo, Albin Kurti, meanwhile wrote that, last year's agreement "on the one hand, brings de facto mutual recognition and normalization of relations between Kosovo and Serbia, and on the other hand, through Article 7, addresses the findings of the Constitutional Court to ' Association'.

"We cannot talk and discuss only about the 'Association': without accepting and respecting the Basic Agreement with the Implementation Annex, without including all 39 agreements and agreements in Brussels and without finding that the 2013 agreement has been violated and continues to be violated by Serbia, and its continuation from 2015 was overturned in the Constitutional Court".

The authorities in Serbia, who have embarked on a campaign to prevent Kosovo's membership in the Council of Europe, say that the main argument is "the non-establishment of the Association".

On Tuesday, the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe approved the report for Kosovo's membership in this council, paving the way for the decision that must be taken in the month of May in the Council of Ministers of the 46 member countries of the organization. Although the report emphasizes that the establishment of the Association should be a "post-accession commitment" for Kosovo, the countries of the "Quint", as the main five Western countries are known, consisting of the United States, France, Germany, Italy and the United Kingdom, they see the issue of this membership as an opportunity to exert pressure on the government of Prime Minister Albin Kurti regarding this issue.

Kosovo accuses Serbia of violating the agreement on the normalization of relations by opposing its membership in international organizations, despite the promise that it will not do so. The Prime Minister of Kosovo, Albin Kurti, said on Friday that Serbia is the main factor in destabilizing efforts for the Western Balkan region. He made these comments as the Serbian Armed Forces were conducting annual exercises at a military training ground in the Novi Pazar region of southern Serbia.

"Today, they will conduct exercises with kamikaze combat drones and the place where these exercises will take place, besides being 30 kilometers from the border of Kosovo, is only 3 kilometers from the border of Serbia and Montenegro. This is also a proof that Serbia is the authority, instance, factor and main actor of destabilizing efforts for the Western Balkans region and represents a threat to our Republic, which they do not recognize, but also to the security of all citizens in our region" , said Prime Minister Kurti.

NATO peacekeeping forces in Kosovo said that KFOR commander Ozkan Ulutas closely followed the exercises in Serbia, for which Serbia had announced his mission.

In a preliminary announcement, KFOR said it continues to implement its mandate to provide a safe environment and freedom of movement for all communities living in Kosovo.

"KFOR also continues to monitor all developments that may affect sustainable security in Kosovo and regional stability, and maintains a visible and appropriate presence on the ground to address all cases, consistent with its mandate of the UN", said the communiqué.

NATO decided to add troops to Kosovo last fall after an attack in northern Kosovo by a group of armed Serbs killed a police officer, raising concerns about stability in the region.

Kosovo declared its independence in 2008 with the support of the United States and major Western countries, while Serbia, supported by Russia, opposes its citizenship. Although it has declared membership of the European Union as its aspiration, Serbia maintains close ties with Moscow and has not joined Western sanctions against it over its aggression in Ukraine, primarily because of the Kremlin's support for the claims. of Belgrade on Kosovo./ VOA

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