A group of public figures, including former ambassadors, journalists and historians, called on the representatives of the government, political institutions and citizens to accept the so-called Franco-German plan for Kosovo as an opportunity for Serbia “to, for the first time, definitely turn toward Euro-Atlantic integration,” Beta reported.
The signatories of this public appeal assessed that “endless debates on whether Kosovo is an integral part of Serbia, and Belgrade’s irresponsible policy that has been in place since the nineties of the past century, have been overridden by reality.”
“There has been no clear distancing from that policy because developments that would enable Serbia’s aspirations in the region are still expected. In addition to spoiling relations with its neighbors, this also harms Serbia that has, with this policy of ‘unification’, put modernization, democratization and the well-being of its citizens on the back burner,” reads the appeal.
The signatories said that “taking Kosovo back into the state framework of Serbia is not only an illusion, but it is also impossible without a new war that would once again set Serbia back.”
“Serbia must finally come to terms with and accept the consequences of its own policies, because neither the Serbs nor the Albanians have any prospects in Kosovo without that,” they said.
The Franco-German proposal, “accepted by the entire European Union (EU) and also backed by the US, is a good basis for taking a step forward in a civilized manner and through an agreement,” reads the public appeal.
“It is in Serbia’s interest to accept Kosovo and the Albanians as equal partners. The proposal rests on premises that initiate the process and open the prospects for both Serbia and Kosovo. That would relax relations, resolve the issue of Kosovo Serbs’ safety and protect their property, as well as cultural and religious heritage,” they said.
“This proposal is an opportunity that we should not miss, because there are no guarantees that there will be better offers. Historical circumstances require the responsibility of all the elites – political, academic, media and religious – to support a proposal that will finally define Serbia as a modern European state,” reads the public appeal.
Some of the signatories of the appeal are Serbia’s former Ambassador to Germany Ivo Viskovic, Sonja Biserko of the Helsinki Committee for Human Rights, lawyer Cedomir Stojkovic, writer Svetislav Basara, historian Milivoje Beslin and journalist Rade Radovanovic.