PRISTINA, Kosovo — The European Union’s prime diplomat on Wednesday mentioned Kosovo and Serbia have reached a deal on a dispute over automobile quantity plates, defusing rising tensions between the 2 Western Balkan neighbors.
EU excessive consultant Josep Borrell posted in his social media web page that Kosovo’s and Serbia’s negotiators “have agreed to keep away from additional escalation and to completely focus on the proposal on normalization of their relations.” Serbia will cease issuing license plates with Kosovo cities’ denominations and Kosovo would stop additional actions on the re-registration of automobiles.
Talks will proceed on the following steps.
Earlier this week Borrell had did not persuade Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic and Kosovo Prime Minister Albin Kurti to achieve a deal, additional elevating considerations concerning the escalating tensions between the previous conflict foes.
Kurti blamed Borrell for focusing solely on the license plates as an alternative of the total normalization of ties between the neighbors.
Vucic mentioned Kurti was liable for the failure of the assembly.
The EU-backed Belgrade-Pristina Dialogue, which is aimed toward normalizing relations between the neighbors and former foes within the Western Balkans, has been at a digital standstill for years. The EU warned Serbia and Kosovo final week that they’re on the sting of a precipice and should resolve their dispute or face the prospect of a return to their violent previous.
Lengthy-simmering tensions between Serbia and its former province mounted once more in latest weeks over the Kosovo authorities’s resolution to ban Serbian-issued license plates, matching Serbia’s earlier ban on Kosovo license plates.
Below the ban, about 6,300 ethnic Serbs proudly owning vehicles with quantity plates deemed to be unlawful in Kosovo had been to be warned till Monday, which was postponed with 48 hours after U.S. embassy’s intervention. Then Kosovo authorities would positive them for the next two months. Till April 21 they’d solely be permitted to drive with non permanent native plates and never allowed to drive after that date.
On Nov. 5, Serb lawmakers, prosecutors and law enforcement officials in Kosovo’s northern Mitrovica area resigned over the transfer.
The difficulty of Kosovo’s independence sparked a 1998-99 conflict through which about 13,000 folks died. Serbia launched a brutal crackdown to curb a separatist revolt by the territory’s ethnic Albanians. NATO bombed Serbia in 1999 to finish the conflict.
Kosovo unilaterally broke away from Serbia in 2008. The Serbian authorities, with assist from China and Russia, has refused to acknowledge Kosovo’s statehood. The US and most of its European allies acknowledge Kosovo as an impartial nation.
NATO Secretary Common Jens Stoltenberg has mentioned that the NATO-led mission in Kosovo, generally known as KFOR, “stays vigilant.”
Llazar Semini reported in Tirana, Albania.