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Oliver Ivanovic: We don't need help in organizing elections in KiM

10. April 2012. | 07:22

Source: Tanjug

State Secretary at the Serbian Ministry of Kosovo-Metohija (KiM) Oliver Ivanovic said Monday that Serbia did not need any help in organizing elections in Kosovo-Metohija (KiM).

State Secretary at the Serbian Ministry of Kosovo-Metohija (KiM) Oliver Ivanovic said Monday that Serbia did not need any help in organizing elections in Kosovo-Metohija (KiM).

He said that to leave Serbia to deal with the problem alone would be enough, adding that the Ahtisaari Plan for the Kosovo north was no longer “in the game” and that he was optimistic about the final outcome in the Kosovo issue.

“We do not need help for elections, we only need not to have anybody interfere in our holding of something that we find to be our legitimate and legal right and the right to let people say who they think should be the president of the Republic of Serbia or head of its parliament and government in the future,” Ivanovic said in an interview with Tanjug.

Commenting on the information about the possibility of the OSCE organizing the Serbian parliamentary and presidential elections in Kosovo, Ivanovic said that the mission had offered its facilitation as a solution Pristina could accept in the current delicate situation.

“But this means nothing to us, as we have always been organizing Serbia's parliamentary and presidential elections in Kosovo on our own and we even organized a local election once, in 2008. Therefore, it seems to be futile blackmailing us like this and offering the OSCE as a facilitator, and I fear that this might create a very serious precedent,” stressed Ivanovic.

He pointed to the fact that international missions had been involved in many affairs in the province, including organizing elections that are held in Kosovo.

But these international missions, says Ivanovic, all stop working at some point or cut their staff so much they cause virtually the same effect, and then they decide to hand over part of their responsibilities to others.

“And they never seem to hand the responsibilities back to Serbia, which allowed them to spread their missions and activities in the first place, but rather give the responsibilities and authority over to Kosovo institutions, which we find to be unacceptable,” Ivanovic said.

He added that Kosovo's status and the status of the north was yet to be debated, but the OSCE and all other international missions should now leave Serbia to deal with its own affairs alone.

Asked about a possible solution for the Kosovo north, Ivanovic said that the Ahtisaari Plan was certainly not one, as it had been rejected at all levels in Serbia and was highly unlikely to be revivified by anybody in the future.

"Therefore, the plan is no longer in the game. There is no doubt that it includes some solutions that could be implemented with certain modifications. But, Ahtissari's plan requires a political framework", Ivanovic said, stressing that the plan requires independence in return for decentralization, or independence in return for human rights and a better protection for the Serb community.

"This is totally absurd, as nowhere in the world are human rights conditioned by major political concessions," he underlined.

Ivanovic believes that the political issues will be put on the agenda when the entire community is ready for that, both the Albanians and the Serbs, since, as he put it, the open issue of Kosovo's status is something that will cause difficulties for both sides.

"I am deeply convinced that we will find a solution. The EU has to help us in that respect and it should not exert pressure, especially not on one side only. These kinds of solutions cannot be found under the pressure of such circumstances", said Ivanovic, and concluded:

"I am optimistic that Europe will adopt the stance that it is in the Union's best interest to have peace in the Balkans. In order for the Balkans to be stable and peaceful, Serbia has to be in peace and stability as well. This means that Serbia should not be forced into accepting anything that is against its vital national goals."


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09. April - 15. April 2012.