EU to Kosovo politicians: Dialogue with Belgrade has no alternative

Peter Stano

The European Union warned Kosovo politicians that the dialogue with Belgrade on the normalisation of relations had no alternative if they wanted to achieve Kosovo's people wish for the European future, while and EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Josep Borrell's spokesperson Peter Stano said on Wednesday the calls by some Pristina leaders to end the dialogue were an attempt to use the topic for a short-term goal.

„Kosovo society is mature enough to understand that dialogue cannot be used for short-term political goals,“ Stano told Radio Free Europe (RFE).

Following the indictment of the Specialist Prosecutors’ Office (SPO) in The Hague, against the former president of Kosovo, Hashim Thaçi and his wartime associates, local politicians have repeatedly called for an end to the dialogue with Serbia.

That position is also supported by Kosovo’s acting president Vjosa Osmani, who took over last week after Thaçi resigned pending trial.

Stano said that both Borrell and the EU Special bloc’s envoy for dialogue Miroslav Lajčák were determined to continue to help the dialogue reaching a comprehensive agreement, regardless of the political situation in Kosovo.

He added the European institutions appreciated the commitment of Kosovo’s Prime Minister of Avudullah Hoti to the dialogue.

„The EU appreciates Prime Minister Hoti’s clear vision of this and his willingness to make difficult choices by showing consistency, maturity and moderation, especially in these challenging times,“ Stano said.

He added that Kosovo’s European perspective was real, but the fulfilment of obligations depended on its people and leadership.