Balkans | The European Union announces progress in Kosovo and Serbia talks

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Balkans |  The European Union announces progress in Kosovo and Serbia talks

The European Union’s High Representative for Foreign Relations and Security Policy, Josep Borrell, said that Kosovo and Serbia have agreed in principle to normalize relations, but more time is needed to implement the agreement.

Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic and Kosovar Prime Minister Albin Kurti met with Borrell in Brussels separately and later in a trilateral meeting.

Borrell indicated that progress had been made in his statement to the press after the talks, and said, “At the same time, more work is needed to implement what was agreed between the parties today.” He said.

EU High Representative Borrell said: “It is important to reach an agreement. The most important thing is to implement what was agreed upon.” He rated it.

Borrell said, “(The leaders’ agreement) This is an important and noteworthy development because since last summer we’ve been dealing with crisis management, and we’ve been focusing only on crises. We’re trying to control tension in the field as a result of crises that come one after another. We’re now moving on to how to manage crises. We We are looking for a structural solution to normalization.” He said.

Noting that the plan, which the leaders agreed to in principle, has been accepted by 27 EU member states, Borrell said the proposal about the plan was made in September, and intense diplomatic action has been carried out since then.

Borrell stated that the agreement will enable people to move freely between Kosovo and Serbia using their IDs or registration plates, while facilitating trade relations and investments.

Stating that the agreement will bring “more security, certainty and predictability” to those living in Kosovo, Borrell said, “The agreement can also serve as a foundation and will be a much-needed confidence to overcome the legacy of the past.” He said.

Borrell stressed that it was a positive development that the two sides agreed to refrain from any action that could lead to an escalation of tensions on the ground, regardless of the coordination of the European Union.

The EU High Representative announced that the leaders will meet again in the middle of next month.

Serbia considers Kosovo, which unilaterally declared its independence in 2008, to be its territory.

Serbia and Kosovo, which clash periodically, are trying to find a common way to normalize relations, and eventually the two countries get to know each other, within the scope of the Belgrade-Pristina dialogue process that began in 2011 with the mediation of the European Union.​


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