Skip to comments.Major powers warn of tensions in north Kosovo
Posted on 08/04/2006 7:57:32 AM PDT by kronos77
BELGRADE (Reuters) - The major powers voiced concern on Friday at tensions in northern Kosovo, where there are growing signs of Serb resistance as the majority Albanian province pushes for independence from Serbia.
It did not specify which developments. Reports suggest Serbs there are strengthening what they say are self-defense groups made up of former military and police officers.
"Both Belgrade and Pristina should take immediate steps to reduce tensions in northern Kosovo, particularly to encourage responsible leadership and build confidence among communities," said the statement, issued by the U.S. liaison office in Kosovo on behalf of the United States, Britain, Germany, France, Italy and Russia.
Three northern Serb municipalities, home to around 50,000 Serbs or almost half Kosovo's Serb population, have already cut what minimal cooperation they had with the Albanian-dominated institutions in Pristina, citing security concerns.
The statement called on "Belgrade, Pristina and Kosovo's residents to take steps to ensure northern Kosovo remains a stable region where the rights of all are respected."
The province of 2 million has been run by the U.N. since 1999, when NATO bombs drove out Serb forces accused of ethnic cleansing in a war with Albanian rebels. Half the Serb population fled a wave of revenge attacks after the war.
The 100,000 Serbs left lead a grim, ghettoized existence, financially supported and politically guided by Belgrade. Serbs in the north enjoy greater freedom, forming the majority above the Ibar River with a clear land link to the rest of Serbia.
Belgrade says it does not want to partition Kosovo. But Prime Minister Vojislav Kostunica said on Monday that, in the event independence is imposed, Belgrade would declare Kosovo an integral part of Serbian territory. Serbs consider Kosovo the cradle of their nation stretching back 1,000 years.
(Excerpt) Read more at washingtonpost.com ...
things are getting hot...
I would venture to say that Serbs in the north enjoy greater freedom than Albanians in "liberated" part of Kosovo or in Albania proper for that matter.
Liberty is a product of civilization and culture.
Ping for an intelligent remark by mr. A.Pole!
The Northern Serbs of Kosovo area is run by the Serb Milicija already..along with small group of Serb Army. They leave a small footprint to not give that impression they run it, though it was obvious they do when UNMIK packed up and left it to them. precursor to the forthcoming?
That is just the feel I have gotten from that area as it will placate many Serbs for now. It is a time-buyer for the Serbs to further strategize and for UNMIK to pull out without casualties from Albanians as they will wake up and realize, "hey, the Americans/Euros really fcked us over. Let's kill 'em.". Poof, American and UNMIK presence is all but vanished, except for the EU token force.
hey, dunno as I could be wrong. Why don't we ask my new roomie, hoppy?
You mean Barney? He's too busy chasing Greeks on the net.
Looks like a job for the European Union.
Yeah right ...