Monday, August 6, 2007

Final status decision in 2008

BELGRADE -- Goran Svilanović says the final Kosovo decision should not be expected before the election of a new U.S. administration in 2008.

“Even after these new talks, Kosovo will have no stronger links to Serbia, on the contrary, they will grow looser and looser, all the way to the end,” the South-Eastern Europe Stability Pact official and former foreign minister in the Đinđić cabinet told Blic newspaper.

“In this process, the north will remain where it is today, meaning, with direct and absolute ties to Serbia in every sense of the word, irrelevant of the legal definition of the status,” Svilanović believes.

According to him, the Contact Group Troika for the new Kosovo talks was formed in order to involve Russia in the management of negotiations and force Moscow to share the responsibility for their outcome, but also to demonstrate that “no compromise was possible even in Putin himself conducted the talks”.

Svilanović sees the EU decision to appoint German diplomat Wolfgang Ischinger as its representative in the Troika as a signal that Germany is interested in a permanent, leading role in EU decisions regarding the Balkans, adding that in that context, Ischinger was “the right man in the right place”.

Svilanović also told the daily he believes the Serbian government has its Plan B, in case the new talks fail, but added no one should expect the details to be revealed until the very last moment.

“The government is aware that even if there is a declaration of independence, and even if the EU recognizes it, that what will in effect transpire is a de facto instant partition of Kosovo, since the north will not integrate with the rest of Kosovo at any point.”

“And, the Serbian government should not be underestimated at any point if this process,” Svilanović added.

“A declaration of independence would be a shortcut to partition. The longer, more elegant way, are negotiations. Still, the government will not mention this, since it would compromise its territorial integrity position the very instant it brings partition up,” he continued.

Commenting on the possibility of a unilateral declaration of independence of Kosovo and individual recognition, Svilanović said that was one possibility, should the sides fail to arrive at a compromise.

“However, even if the U.S. were to recognize Kosovo as an independent state, that would not carry excessive weight and would not change the facts in the field.”

“At this point, less than half of the EU member states are prepared for such a move [unilateral recognition]. However, this could change by the end of the year. That too depends on the upcoming talks and the manner in which the participants in the negotiations will choose to behave,” Svilanović concluded.

(Source :

No comments:

Add to Technorati Favorites
eXTReMe Tracker