Stano on arrests in Kosovo: We are following the situation closely

Peter Stano
Evropska komisija

The European Union (EU) is in close touch with the authorities in Pristina in order to obtain all the necessary information regarding the latest arrests of the Serbs in the north of Kosovo who are suspected of war crimes.

“We are following the situation very closely and we are in close touch with the relevant counterparts and authorities (in Kosovo) to have a complete understanding about the developments and we will react if and when appropriate publicly,” said EU Diplomatic Service spokesperson Peter Stano.

Replying to a reporter’s question, Stano said the EU is not denying Kosovo the right to prosecute for war crimes, but he did not wish to elaborate on the matter.

He reiterated that the path to normalization of relations between the two sides is clear and, when repeatedly asked about the formation of the Community of Serb Municipalities in Kosovo, Stano said this was an international obligation that Kosovo has undertaken to implement.

“Work to establish the Association/Community of Serb Municipalities needs to start without any further delay and without any preconditions. The issue of how to do it, in what way and in what form – is to be discussed within the dialogue – the dialogue is the platform to sort out the issues. The process should and will be conducted in the dialogue, not out in the open, not in public, not in the media,” said Stano.

EU’s expectations were very clearly phrased earlier this week in a joint statement signed by all 27 member states – work needs to start without any further delay and without any preconditions, said Stano.