EU Wants Quick Start for Serbia-Kosovo Deal

Posted July 4th, 2011 at 4:50 pm (UTC-5)
Leave a comment

The European Union says it wants “swift implementation” of a deal between Serbia and Kosovo aimed at easing Kosovo's concerns about Serbia's refusal to recognize its independence.

The pact, signed late last week, will let Kosovars for the first time cross into Serbia with Kosovo identification papers. It also returns civil documents such as birth certificates and marriage licensees to Kosovo from Serbian control. Both countries also will recognize each other's educational diplomas.

EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton applauds the accord and says it will bring both Serbia and Kosovo closer to the European Union.

But Serbian Foreign Minister Vuk Jeremik tells the Associated Press that a desire for Balkan stabilization, and not pressure from the EU, motivated his country to strike a deal with Kosovo and also arrest fugutive war crimes suspect Ratko Mladic.

This is the first agreement between Serbia and Kosovo since Kosovo declared independence three years ago.

A new round of Serbia-Kosovo talks is expected to start later this month to deal with telecommunications and customs issues.