Kosovo Quits Brussels Talks

Balkan Investigative Reporting Network (BIRN) has reported that Kosovo will not take part in the EU-led dialogue in Brussels until Belgrade implements six agreements.

The BIRN has seen an email sent to European External Actions Service by Avni Arifi, Kosovo’s chief negotiator in EU-mediated talks with Belgrade.

Balkan Insight, with the BIRN reference, reported, “Kosovo expects Serbia to implement agreements on energy, freedom of movement, mutual recognition of university diplomas, Integrated Border Management, IBM, Kosovo’s regional representation and on opening the bridge in the divided northern Kosovo town of Mitrovica.”

BIRN quoted Arifi writing in the email sent to European External Actions Service: “We will participate in your invitation after all the outstanding deals have been FULLY implemented and respected.”

The Kosovo delegation was invited “to give a presentation on where they are with drafting the statute of the Association/Community.”

Meanwhile, Serbia has insisted that Pristina must move forward with “the establishment of the Association of Serbian Municipalities to represent the Kosovo Serb minority’s interests,” Balkan Insight reported.

Kosovo’s Arifi has also accused the EU of “serving the Serb interests in creating their own agenda.”

Arifi added: “For months, we have rightly insisted and asked for your help in facilitating the implementation of the Energy agreement and other pending agreements.”

He accused EU of ‘continuously ignoring’ Kosovo’s interest. He said: “You have completely ignored our continuous … requests to focus on the Energy issue, for which the whole continental market is disrupted, and which literally needs only two hours to solve.”

An apparent disappointed Arifi continues: “I remind you of the statement of the Head of Serb delegation: ‘We are here only for the implementation of the Association Agreement.’ With this invitation, basically, you are saying the same.”

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