emg home
Thousands protest arrests of journalists in Turkey Last BBC news broadcast in Macedonian language Report: Pro-Gadhafi forces enter Libyan town Zawiyah Anti-government protest rally in Zagreb Good cooperation between Serbian, US land armies Croatian war veteran Tihomir Purda returns to Vukovar Denmark ratifies SAA with Serbia DSS requests prime minister's resignation Vucic: Government reshuffle is but buying time Serbia: Crime rates drop in 2010 Cvetkovic delivers award to best entrepreneur in 2010 State of Department: Kosovo is transit area for drug smuggling Tadic on cultural aspect of the EU strategy for the Danube region Murder in Frankfurt will not affect Kosovo-U.S. relations Biden to assess Russia reset, visit Finland and Moldova Global food prices reach record high in February

Stefanovic: Topics for talks between Serbia and Kosovo still under review

01. March 2011. | 11:23 11:28

Source: Tanjug, Infobiro.tv

Borislav Stefanovic, the head of Serbia's team for talks with Pristina, said Monday that the topics for the negotiations were still under review, adding that he expected the dialogue to yield results quickly after its start.

Borislav Stefanovic, the head of Serbia's team for talks with Pristina, said Monday that the topics for the negotiations were still under review, adding that he expected the dialogue to yield results quickly after its start.

"The most important thing for us are the problems Serbs in Kosovo face and we shall try to settle those immediately, while the sovereignty issues will be discussed in the later stages," Stefanovic noted, speaking at a Tanjug roundtable, entitled Ahead of Belgrade-Pristina talks.

The concept of the talks will be completely different from the previous negotiations between Belgrade and Pristina, because those talks had only one topic, which in turn had the potential to make either side abandon the dialogue.

"We have not entered the process to play a game of poker and have a winner and a loser, but to find answers to the people's problems," he pointed out. The negotiations should not be approached with suspicions of backstage dealings and deception, Stefanovic argued.

According to him, the EU, as the mediator, will have a status-neutral role and no ultimatums will be imposed on either side.

The Belgrade team will stick to the Constitution and try to use a constructive approach to improve the lives of Kosovo residents, which should not be interpreted as willingness to make concessions, Stefanovic noted.

He expects certain parts of both communities to condemn the negotiations, but nevertheless feels that they are needed for the benefit of the people and both Serbs' and Kosovo Albanians' European future.

Both sides tend to look back to the past, but the talks are there to help them overcome that, he concluded.

The negotiations will be a sobering event for both sides and they should refrain from past rhetoric, he added.

"Belgrade has learned its lessons from various bad experiences in the past, and that is our message to Pristina, learn your lessons, show maturity," he stressed. Pristina could show its democratic maturity by prosecuting those responsible for war crimes against ethnic non-Albanians, he explained.

The issue of the predominantly Serb populated northern Kosovo will definitely appear on the agenda, but the solution cannot be the same as in other parts of Kosovo, since the Serb population in the north is the most united. It is wrong to think that all of the problems there could be settled over night by establishing central government institutions, Stefanovic stated.

Negotiations with Belgrade important for Pristina

Iljber Hisa, an analyst and Kosovo government coordinator for northern Kosovo, said Monday Pristina views the coming talks with Belgrade as a great opportunity if they are treated as talks between neighbours and in the spirit of EU and NATO integration.

Hisa spoke at a Tanjug roundtable, entitled Ahead of Belgrade-Pristina talks, where he stated that Pristina was against divisions and asymmetrical approaches.

Hisa's participation in the discussion was at the same time his first visit to Belgrade since 1999.

The negotiations have a great chance of success if they are not viewed as a way to get something from Brussels, Hisa warned.

Belgrade needs to acknowledge the new reality in Kosovo, he stressed. So far 76 countries have recognized Kosovo, and the Serbian negotiating team cannot change that, he added.

Serbia can help the Kosovo Serbs by getting them to integrate, instead of monopolizing their lives, he claims.

It is irrational to impose such a monopoly in order to gain a better negotiating position in Brussels, the analyst from Kosovo pointed out.

According to him, the Serb community in Kosovo is willing to integrate into the Kosovo society and an increasing number of people want to use the benefits stemming from Martti Ahtisaari's plan and the decentralization.

The Vienna talks were successful because they granted Serbs the kind of rights and decentralization that exist nowhere else in the region, Hisa remarked.

Micic: Key aspect of Belgrade-Pristina dialogue should be existence rather than domination

Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) official Natasa Micic stated on Monday that the LDP believes that the upcoming talks between Belgrade and Pristina are a great chance, adding that the key aspect of these negotiations should be existence rather than domination.

“The LDP has always urged talks between Belgrade and Pristina. We believe that such a dialogue is a great chance. The problems are huge, but it is important that we approach them in a constructive manner. The crucial idea should be existence, rather than domination,” Micic said at a roundtable “Ahead of Belgrade-Pristina talks” organized by Tanjug News Agency.

Micic qualified as good that institutions of the authorities have been formed in Kosovo and that certain personnel changes took place appointing people who are not burdened by the role they had in the previous 15 years, and added that the talks will contribute to the resolution of everyday issues of the people in Kosovo and that therefore they cannot be technical.

“It is important that Serbs in Kosovo have participated in the elections and it would be good if they too could be included in Pristina's team,” Micic noted, and underlined that it is important to consider the existing opportunities and secure a special status for Serbs.

According to her, it is not recommendable to diminish the importance of the negotiations claiming that Serbia has no plan for the talks.

Cohen: Taci lost plenty of credibility, negotiations between Belgrade and Pristina to be difficult

Kosovo's Prime Minister Hasim Taci has lost a lot of credibility, both because of the recent election irregularities and Dick Marty's allegations of organ trafficking, which will make things difficult for him inside and outside of Kosovo's political scene, according to Lenard Cohen, professor of international studies at the Simon Fraser University in Vancouver.

Taci has obviously lost the reputation he had a year before the elections and Marty's report, Cohen told Radio Free Europe.

Kosovo's new President Bedzet Pacoli and his small party, the New Kosovo Alliance, have formed a coalition with Taci which can help him because Pacoli has a lot of contacts throughout the world, but Taci will still face more trouble than before, Cohen noted.

That will cast a shadow over the talks between Kosovo and Serbia that are scheduled to start March, he stated.

The negotiations will progress very slowly, he believes, adding that a division of Kosovo is not an option.

The Kosovo government will have to consider a new paradigm of relations with the Serbs in the north of Kosovo, Cohen remarked. Although it will probably not happen this year, both sides will still eventually realize and accept that a new order will have to be established in northern Kosovo, a new type of autonomy, which would offer more than previously done by Martti Ahtisaari in his plan for Kosovo, Cohen concluded.


My Web

Enter text:


28. February - 06. March 2011.