The US Special Envoy for the Western Balkans, Gabriel Escobar, announced that the implementation of the normalization agreement between Serbia and Kosovo should begin immediately.
Escobar made a statement during the online meeting about the verbal agreement reached by the leaders of Serbia and Kosovo on the normalization of relations at the negotiation meeting held in Ohrid, North Macedonia on March 19.
Escobar stated that the United States welcomes this important agreement between Serbia and Kosovo.
Escobar stressed the importance of implementing this agreement for European integration between the two countries, and said: “This agreement is a legally binding commitment for both parties and both parties will be evaluated in terms of their performance under the agreement. Implementation must begin immediately, so we will have to quickly implement what has been agreed upon, And as countries do, you will see the benefits.”
Escobar said that the Ohrid meeting was not focused on getting to know the two countries, but on normalizing relations.
We hope that all EU countries will recognize Kosovo in the near future. It is important for Kosovo, which is part of the European family, to be recognized by the rest of the European family, and I think one of the things that should happen in the region is that all the countries of the Western Balkans should know each other and have peaceful and productive relations.”
Escobar stressed that the agreement reached in Ohrid marked the beginning of reconciliation between Kosovo and Serbia and that there was more work to be done.
Escobar pointed out that Kosovo’s establishment of the Confederation of Serbian Municipalities in the settlements where mostly Serbs live in the country and Serbia’s recognition of official documents issued by Kosovo are the two most important clauses of the agreement, and Escobar continued his words as follows:
“We believe there should be a federation that serves the interests of the peoples of the region, works for both sides, and allows Serbs to fully participate in Kosovo’s civil and democratic life. It should not violate Kosovo’s constitutional structure or affect its functions. There are many models and options in this matter, and we hope that We are discussing it with both parties so that we can come to not only a common, but also an attractive option.
Escobar also said that Russia had tried to “undermine” the agreement process through various channels, but had failed.
Relations between Serbia and Kosovo
The European Union demands Kosovo and Serbia to reach a final agreement that can resolve the issues between the two countries to advance the integration process.
Although Kosovo is recognized as an independent country by 117 countries, it is described as one of the regions of “frozen conflict” in Europe due to the ongoing ethnic tensions in its north and its inability to become a member of the United Nations.
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 initiated in 2011 with the mediation of the European Union.
The EU High Representative for External Relations and Security Policy, Josep Borrell, announced that a verbal agreement had been reached between Kosovo and Serbia as part of the high-level meeting of the Belgrade-Pristina Dialogue held in Ohrid, North Macedonia on March 18.
- Balkans | Power outage in part of Skopje on Sunday morning
- Balkans | Banning the registration of new players and coaches from the THY Europa League to Red Star
- Balkans | Albanian President Bijaj met with his Austrian counterpart Van der Bellen
- Balkans | Belgrade academics are calling for the abolition of Putin’s honorary doctorate
- Fuel prices have been updated.
- Balkans | Those who lost their lives in the earthquakes were commemorated in Albania
- Balkans | The Bulgarian rescue team returning from Turkey regrets not being able to save more lives
- Balkans | Bomb threat on the Central Bank and nine secondary schools
- Balkans | Al-Hilal Association announced the holding of elections in its branches
- Balkans | AP: Albania is an important ally