Pristina seems split on Kosovo border correction issue

Pristina seems split on Kosovo border correction issue Izvor: AFP/Armend NIMANI/Dimitar Dilkoff

President Hashim Thaci told media on Wednesday that there would not be either a partition of Kosovo or autonomy for the Serbs, but that Serbia's Presevo Valley region might join Kosovo, while his Prime Minister said only wars changed frontiers, the Beta news agency reported.

Kosovo’s Prime Minister Ramush Haradinaj told reporters in Albania that he favoured ‘a mutual recognition within the existing borders.”

Speaking in the city of Vlorë he said that "the current reality is a result of wars. Opening the issue of borders is unacceptable to me.”

“Kosovo's borders are drawn in war and that they can only change by war. Whoever believes that the borders change in some other way, is wrong,” he added, commenting on Thaci’s statement.

Thaci explained that he was against the idea before, but changed his mind after the leaders of Serbia's southern region of Presevo Valley, mostly populated by ethnic Albanians, demanded to couple with Kosovo.

“We have to put a maximum of our efforts to reach a final peace agreement (with Belgrade). I’m in favour of a deal, and following the request by the representatives of the Presevo Valley, I suggest the border correction. That does not mean the division of Kosovo or autonomy for the (Kosovo) Serbs,” Thaci said.

He described the correction of borders as the complete union between Kosovo and Presevo, Bujanovac and Medvedja (the three municipalities in the Valley), which, he said, should be a transparent and peaceful process in the Belgrade – Pristina dialogue.

Referring to Haradinaj's words, Thaci said that “the time of war has passed,” and that the border correction was possible “with the consent from both sides.”

He added that Kosovo would honour its obligations regarding the establishment of the Community of Serb Municipalities (CSM) “following the (Kosovo) constitution and the Brussels agreement.”

Official Belgrade has not commented on the issue of Presevo Valley yet, although Pristina’s leaders have been talking about it for some time.

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