US: No More Debate on UN Kosovo Plan

Brussels – The United States Assistant Secretary of State Daniel Fried says there will be no more talks with Serbia on the UN Plan’s for the deployment of the EU mission to Kosovo.

“I don’t think the debate on the six-point plan will be reopened, I think it’s time to stop negotiations with Belgrade, they’re done,” Fried said in an interview with Tirana’s TV Klan.

“It is time to move ahead and for (the European Union’s new law-and-order mission) EULEX to deploy across the whole of Kosovo,” he added.

Fried however did not exclude new “arrangements” with Belgrade which would entail as the end result: the deployment of EULEX across Kosovo.

“There may be some interim arrangements but those arrangements are going to be implemented in coordination and consultation with the Kosovo government,” Fried said, arguing there are some “practical realities” therefore it would be practical if Belgrade decides to cooperate and urges Serbs in the north to cooperate with EULEX.

He also stated that the 4 points plan presented this week by leaders of Kosovo institutions are “a good basis on which to proceed.”

Kosovo’s own four-point plan insists on the unconditional deployment of EULEX as based on the blueprint for Kosovo’s supervised independence devised by former UN envoy Martti Ahtisaari.

“Kosovars issued four principles and they discussed it with us so this is not a unilateral act by them,” Fried said, referring to the fact that Kosovo leaders worked together with US and EU representatives on drafting the plan.

He added that the six-point plan is not entirely bad but Pristina’s rejection of it should be rejected.

Kosovo, which unilaterally declared independence from Serbia in February and has been recognised by most European Union member states, objects to the six-point plan being based on UN Security Council Resolution 1244. This resolution, passed at the end of the 1998-1999 conflict between Serb forces and Kosovo’s ethnic Albanian majority, refers to Kosovo as Serbia’s southern province, not as an independent state.

Serbia insists that the EU cannot deploy a new civilian mission in Kosovo to replace the UN administration unless the mission is neutral in status and does not put into action the plan of former UN envoy Martti Ahtisaari – which envisages internationally-supervised independence for Kosovo.

Belgrade also insists that the mission must be confirmed by the UN Security Council, in which it has a strong ally with veto power – Russia.

The proposal envisages the gradual replacement of the administrative UN mission in Kosovo, UNMIK, which has been in the province since 1999, with an EU civilian mission of police and court officials.

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