Emmanuel Macron and Olaf Scholz need Belgrade to edge in direction of a compromise with Kosovo
French and German leaders despatched a joint letter to Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic on Sunday, urging him to organize for “tough selections” within the dialogue between Belgrade and the breakaway province of Kosovo.
Of their correspondence, launched by Vucic’s press workplace, French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz mentioned the normalization of ties between Kosovo and Serbia is paramount for European and Balkan stability.
“We… urge you to indicate most dedication and willingness to make tough selections that can promote the dialogue between Kosovo and Serbia below the auspices of the EU,” they wrote, including that the current standoff between Belgrade and Pristina over identification paperwork and license plates has proven the necessity for constructive steps.
Macron and Scholz additionally indicated that they’ve dispatched their advisers Emmanuel Bonne and Jens Plotner to assist Miroslav Lajcak, EU particular consultant for the Western Balkans, in his diplomatic efforts.
The 2 EU leaders submitted the letter after the EU’s international coverage chief Josep Borrell introduced final week that Serbia and Kosovo had reached an “settlement on freedom of motion.” Belgrade, specifically, consented to abolish entry and exit paperwork for Kosovo ID holders, and Kosovo agreed to not introduce the identical for Serbian ID holders, Borrell mentioned on the time.
Nevertheless, tensions are nonetheless operating excessive between Kosovo and Serbia. Whereas the 2 sides managed to achieve a partial compromise, the Kosovo authorities insists that Serbian license plates and ID playing cards needs to be changed by Pristina-issued ones.
Towards this backdrop, the Serbian Military kicked off workout routines close to the executive boundary with Kosovo on Wednesday. Their timing coincided with the earlier deadline to modify license plates, which was, nonetheless, later pushed again to October 31.
Kosovo unilaterally declared independence in 2008, and has been acknowledged by the US and its allies – however not by about half the world, together with Belgrade, Russia, China, and a number of other EU member international locations. Vucic is at present pursuing a coverage of navy neutrality and never imposing sanctions on Russia, whereas trying to hitch the EU.