Ambassador says US opposed to RS-like entity in Kosovo

NEWS 31.01.2023 19:56

US Ambassador in Pristina Jeff Hovenier said on Tuesday that Washington opposes the forming of an entity similar to the Republika Srpska in Kosovo.

“We strictly oppose the creation of any entity resembling Republika Srpska in Bosnia and Herzegovina,” a statement quoted the ambassador as saying after a meeting at the US embassy focused on the Community of Serb Municipalities.

He said that Pristina is expected to follow through on its obligations and called the Kosovo government to present its vision for the Community of Serb Municipalities, saying that is “critical, important, and urgent”.

The ambassador told reporters that the meeting with Kosovo government and civil society officials, political leaders and members of the diplomatic corps was organized to hear different views on the issue and seek common ground with the goal of facilitating and advancing the Government of Kosovo’s obligations to implement an Association of Serb-Majority Municipalities (ASM) in Kosovo.

“We heard firsthand the views of participants on the implementation of an ASM and how this can be accomplished in a manner that ensures Kosovo’s future as a sovereign, independent, multiethnic, and democratic country. These perspectives are important to advancing Kosovo’s progress on its path to European and Euro-Atlantic integration,” Hovenier said.

The ambassador said the discussion focused on how the Community can function in practice under Kosovo’s legal framework and how it can contribute to economic development and “effective delivery of government services for the Kosovan Serb and other minority communities”. He said that the meeting raised a number of topics including the responsibilities and limitations of the Community and how it could help meet needs such as education, health care and local economic development.

“Today’s discussion reflects the importance the United States and our partners place on Kosovo implementing an Association of Serb-majority Municipalities that complies with Kosovo’s Constitution and the 2015 Constitutional Court decision,” he said adding that the US does not support any arrangement that violates Kosovo’s Constitution, or threatens Kosovo’s sovereignty, independence, multiethnic character, or democratic institutions.