Serbian, Kosovo FMs trade blame in UN Security Council

NEWS 21.04.2022 11:36
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Source: Tanjug / Evan Schneider/United Nations via AP

The foreign ministers of Serbia and Kosovo traded accusations at a UN Security Council session which debated the latest report on the UN Mission in Kosovo.

Serbian Foreign Minister Nikola Selakovic told the session that the authorities in Pristina were “manifesting malignant nationalism towards the Serbs in Kosovo”. With the goal of initiating an exodus of the Serbs. He said that the situation in Kosovo was far from normal and stable.

The UN Security Council heard a regular semi-annual report on UNMIK from Secretary General Antonio Guteres.

Selakovic said that the Kosovo authorities were ignoring Serb political representatives in institutions and taking decisions without them. “Politically staged investigations and court proceedings are creating an atmosphere of insecurity,” he added. He warned against laying equal blame on the two sides in crisis situations. According to Selakovic, the causes of the problem have to be identified and a message sent to the people in power about the need to establish inter-ethnic trust by having Kosovo institutions abide by and implement agreements.

“The statements from Pristina are a message to the Serb people that they should not count on their collective rights,” he said and recalled that Serbian nationals living in Kosovo were not allowed to vote at elections for the first time since 1999 confirming what he said is the discriminatory character of the authorities in Pristina.

UNMIK chief Caroline Ziadeh told the UN Security Council that the leaderships in Belgrade and Pristina should engage more constructively in the European Union-mediated dialogue which has led to “significant results on various practical issues” but added that a comprehensive normalization of relations is still out of reach.

Kosovo Foreign Minister Donika Gervala accused Serbia of being the biggest threat to the stability of the region. “Serbia is the greatest threat to the normalization of relations and the stability of the region,” she said adding that “Serbia remains Russia’s satellite” which is the main cause of instability in the Western Balkans.

Gervala told the UN Security Council that Serbia is continuing to arm itself, that “all the countries of the region are facing danger from Serbia … which has military prepared to attack”.

She claimed that the recently reported assaults on Kosovo police officers near border crossings with Serbia were “terrrorism” and blamed the Serbian authorities for them. “Those attacks came from the territory of Serbia and would be impossible if (Serbian President Aleksandar) Vucic did not tolerate them,” Gervala said.

She said that Serbia has to accept the reality that Kosovo is an independent state.