A leading western envoy in Pristina believes the ruling of the International Court of Justice on the legality of Kosovo’s independence will lead to a surge in new recognitions.
While Pieter Feith, who is EU Special Representative and head of the International Civilian Office, said he expects the decision to be balanced, he predicted ‘significantly more recognitions’.
He also said that the 69 countries which have already recognised Kosovo’s declaration of independence of February 2008 are unlikely to withdraw their decisions following the ICJ ruling, which is expected in July.
The comments came at a joint press conference in Brussels on Tuesday, June 8, between Mr Feith and the head of the EU rule of law mission in Kosovo, Yves de Kermabon.
Mr Feith added that the ICJ ruling will also have a major impact on international law.
He said: “It will break new ground in international law.”
He explained that it would clarify an ‘area where international law is not very articulated in terms of the rights of the state and peoples to independence’.