Moves to create a Kosovo army have ‘deteriorated relations’ with Serbia: UN peacekeeping chief

UN Photo/Evan Schneider Jean-Pierre Lacroix, Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations, briefs the Security Council, 17 December 2018.

This article is brought to you in association with the United Nations.

The decision by Kosovo’s parliament to form a national army was described by the UN Peacekeeping chief on Monday as having “further deteriorated relations between Belgrade and Pristina,” which, he said, have been strained for some time.

Jean Pierre Lacroix, head of the Department of Peacekeeping Operations (DPKO) was briefing the Security Council on recent developments that have heightened tensions between Serbia and Kosovo, which became embroiled in conflict in the late 1990s, when Kosovo made a bid for independence.

Mr. Lacroix began his briefing, by pointing to November 21, when Kosovo announced new tariffs on goods imported from Serbia and Bosnia, raising them from ten to 100 percent. In reaction, Mayors of four Kosovo Serb-majority regions of northern Kosovo, announced their resignations, and the parliaments of their municipalities cut off official communications with the capital, Pristina.

Serbia, for its part, announced that it would only take part in European Union-facilitated talks with Kosovo if the tariff hike was reversed.

This was the tense backdrop, said Mr. Lacroix, for Kosovo’s adoption of three laws that provide for “substantial changes” to the mandate, role and strength of the Kosovo Security Force. The Government’s intentions were clarified in a statement which announced the country’s right to have “an army, a multi-ethnic and professional force built under the highest NATO standards.”

Serbia characterized the move by Kosovo as an act of “political aggression” and called on KFOR, the NATO-led peacekeeping force – which was set up following a Security Council resolution and is responsible for establishing a secure environment in the country – not to allow any kind of “Kosovo Army” to operate. According to media reports, Serbia has warned that the creation of such an army would violate a UN resolution that ended Kosovo’s war of independence from Serbia.

On Friday, UN chief António Guterres “noted with concern” Kosovo’s adoption of the draft laws to strengthen its Security Force, reiterating that only KFOR has the responsibility to ensure a safe and secure environment in the country, and calling on all parties to exercise restraint and refrain from any actions that could raise tensions.

In his Monday briefing, Mr. Lacroix said that it was crucial that the two countries avoid any steps that could further worsen the situation, and urged them to “find ways to re-engage in the dialogue aimed at the normalization of their mutual relations.” The UN Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK), he added, is working closely with KFOR, and focusing on inter-community trust building, which is “essential for the long-term normalization of relations between Belgrade and Pristina.”

Advertising

the sting Milestone

Featured Stings

Can we feed everyone without unleashing disaster? Read on

These campaigners want to give a quarter of the UK back to nature

How to build a more resilient and inclusive global system

Stopping antimicrobial resistance would cost just USD 2 per person a year

Conditions deteriorating alarmingly in Yemen, warns senior UN official

Young health workforce – a core of effective primary healthcare?

4 key steps to support cross-border payments and digital trade growth

MEPs choose Wiewiórowski to be the EU’s data protection watchdog

EU-wide rules for safety of drones approved by European Parliament

UN spotlights ‘explosive’ obesity rates, hunger in Latin America and Caribbean

Estonian Prime Minister Ratas: Europe is a thought that must become a feeling

UN Mission in Haiti calls on protestors, authorities, to refrain from violence

A Sting Exclusive: “Stronger Cybersecurity for a safer EU against cybercrime and cyber threats”, by MEP Dalli

Protests, violence in Haiti prompts international call for ‘realistic and lasting solutions’ to crisis

Boosting adult learning essential to help people adapt to future of work

How India’s new consumers can contribute to a $6 trillion opportunity

How has tech been used for good in civil society? We asked the experts

Italy’s M.Renzi and Germany’s S. Gabriel veto austerity, ask EU leaders to endorse growth measures

‘The clock is ticking’ on meeting the Sustainable Development Goals, says UN deputy chief

Commission reviews relations with China, proposes 10 actions

‘Deeply concerned.’ WHO officials stress the need for continued vigilance – WHO briefing

Can Pakistan make its energy sector greener, cheaper and more reliable? The government thinks so

How to help companies become global defenders of LGBTI rights

Family-friendly policies benefit all of us. Here are 4 ways to boost them

Can China deal with climate change without the U.S.?

G20 LIVE: “International communities and leaders have great expectations for 2016 G20 summit in Hangzhou China”, Mr Wang Xiaolong, the Chinese Foreign Ministry’s special envoy stresses live from G20 in Antalya Turkey

The ethics of the Medical Technology Civilisation era

2019 ‘a critical year’ for Somali politics and development says Security Council

Eurozone banks are unable to support real economy’s dawning growth

China in My Suburbs

Millions at risk if Syria’s war moves to last redoubt of Idlib, warns senior aid official

Brazil’s hopeless future of science

Eurozone: Negative statistics bring deflation and recession closer

UN makes ‘declaration of digital interdependence’, with release of tech report

Cyber-Risk Assessments: the vaccine for companies in the Fourth Industrial Revolution

EU budget 2020: Commission focuses its proposal on jobs, growth and security

How China’s sponge cities are preparing for sea-level rise

‘Forgotten crisis’ in Cameroon, with attacks on the rise, millions in need of ‘lifesaving assistance’

Paradise islands of Pacific increasingly vulnerable to climate change, as UN boosts resilience

This Brooklyn farm company is training a new generation of urban farmers

Somalia: UN Security Council condemns terrorist attack in which dozens were killed or injured

Mechanism to protect democracy in the EU needed more than ever, says the EP

6 charts that show how Japan’s economy stacks up as it enters a new era

A 550 km-long mass of rotting seaweed is heading for Mexico’s pristine beaches

Everybody against Japan over yen’s devaluation

The Impact of climates changes in health: a problem for all of us

The community and a decent working conditions for the young health workforce

EU to host international donors’ conference for Albania to help with reconstruction after earthquake

DR Congo Ebola outbreak still an international public health concern

Guterres censures terrorist attacks in Nigeria, pledges UN ‘solidarity’

Commission approves emergency measures to protect eastern Baltic cod

What can the private sector do to alleviate the refugee crisis?

The EU’s outermost regions: strengthened partnership bears fruit

TTIP wins Merkel’s endorsement ahead of 2016 tough deadline

Parliament gives green light to EU-Singapore trade and investment protection deals

‘InvestEU’ programme: big boost for jobs, growth and investment

Tax crimes: MEPs want EU financial police force and financial intelligence unit

Why the most important tool in healthcare is trust

Afghanistan: UN mission welcomes new polling dates following election delays

We need to talk about mental health at work, say employees

How universities can become a platform for social change

Migration surge leaves children stranded, begging on Djibouti’s streets

Commission’s action plan: financial world mandatory links to environmental targets

What the future of trust looks like

More Stings?

Advertising

Speak your Mind Here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s