UN Secretary-General to discuss Kosovo with Serbian FM

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and Serbian FM Vuk Jeremic on Thursday discussed the Kosovo issue and Serbia’s recent resolution on the topic, which it submitted to the UN General Assembly in New York earlier this week.

In an interview with Serbian broadcaster RTS, a spokesperson for the secretary-general, Farhan Haq, said that Ban planned to work closely with the European Union, which has offered to help create conditions for dialogue between Belgrade and Pristina.

The secretary-general has also called on all parties involved in resolving the Kosovo issue to support constructive dialogue and resolve all open issues while maintaining political stability and refraining from any provocation.

On Wednesday, Belgrade submitted a resolution to the UN General Assembly that “clearly states” that unilateral secession is not an acceptable means for solving territorial disputes. The resolution also calls for dialogue as a way to reach mutually acceptable solutions “for all open issues” in the interest of peace, safety and cooperation in the region. Belgrade’s resolution came after the International Court of Justice, ICJ, said last week in an advisory opinion that Kosovo’s declaration of independence is in accordance with international law.

After meeting with the secretary-general, Jeremic told Tanjug news agency that Serbia is committed to finding a compromise solution for the Kosovo issue, noting that this is evident from the content of the resolution.

“We believe this can be achieved only by peaceful means, through negotiations, rather than by unilateral moves,” Tanjug news agency quoted the FM as saying.

Speaking about the UN General Assembly in September, at which the Kosovo issue is likely to be high on the agenda, Jeremic said that it will be extremely difficult for Serbia to secure a majority in the UN General Assembly after the ICJ’s ruling, but that the Serbian government will do its best to achieve that. “It is of utmost importance to preserve peace and stability in the territory of the province,” he added.

Ban and Jeremic also discussed the upcoming Conference on Disarmament, which is scheduled to be held in New York in late September.

“The Secretary-General said he hoped Minister Jeremic would participate in the work of this conference,” RTS quoted Haq as saying.

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