With elections in Serbia slated for 16 March, for the EU parliament in May and Kosovo in autumn, northern Kosovo will be left in a dangerous limbo, without clarity about which laws apply and with the danger that the progress made in normalising relations could be reversed.
Post Tagged with: "Mitrovica"
Despite the fact that the Brussels Agreement and the November election is a first step towards the bridging of differences between Kosovo on the one hand and Kosovo Serbs and Serbia on the other, the process of integration of Serbs into the Kosovan system will require time, good will on all sides […]
TransConflict is piloting a new initiative which lays the foundations for collaborative conflict transformation by facilitating the sharing of perspectives on specific conflicts. The latest case study launched explores conflict in Kosovo.
A way should be found to ensure Mayor-elect, Krstimir Pantic, can take his place without further delay, whilst the Quint should make clear to Pristina that it will not allow efforts to delay or derail implementation. This new opportunity to move forward with peaceful change could yet be lost.
The EU – with US support – has helped broker a framework that puts the current frozen conflict between Serbia and Kosovo onto a path that may eventually allow further mutual accommodation. But this opportunity could be lost if any of the parties try to move too quickly.
Immediately after the December 1st run-off, Pristina, Belgrade and the international community should translate the famous concept of integration into measurable and tangible benefits for the north.
When the election is run again, it will hopefully take place with adequate EULEX presence and with UN as well as OSCE observation. Whatever the outcome, the EU, US and NATO should resist pressures from Pristina to simply “take over” and impose its rule in the north.
Defining the boundaries and relationship between the two Mitrovicas will require acceptance of the fact that North Mitrovica is perhaps the most zero-sum issue of all and that it cannot be simply left to Pristina to decide.
Should the Kosovo government end funding of the UN Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK) Administration in Mitrovica (UAM), it will cut-off one of the few institutional linkages between north Mitrovica and Pristina.
Having achieved its aim of demonstrating that the northern resistance to the imposition of Pristina institutions is a genuine popular response, and not the result of criminal coercion, it is now time to reconsider the planned 15th February referendum.