Serbian authorities will not organise local elections in Kosovo according to the Serbian minister for Kosovo Goran Bogdanović. He explained that Belgrade received a negative answer from the UN administration in Pristina – UNMIK – which is administrating Kosovo in accordance with UN Security Council resolution 1244. “We do not intend to break UNSC Resolution 1244 in any way and endanger Serbs living south from the Ibar river,” Bogdanović stressed, reminding that according to the Resolution, UNMIK is in charge of organising local elections in Kosovo. He added that this situation does not imply closure of Serbian institutions in Kosovo, pointing out that elections were not held in 1999 or 2008. Bogdanović rejected announcements of two Serbian municipalities in northern Kosovo who stated they will hold local elections regardless of the UNMIK stance. He reiterated that no one has the right to break the UNSC Resolution 1244.
Minister Bogdanović emphasised that if Serbian side is regarded as the one breaking the international agreement, it could not have legitimacy to expect the international community and Kosovo Albanians to eventually negotiate status of Kosovo with Belgrade. He urged local authorities of Serbian municipalities not to hold the local elections and pointed out that recognition of their results would be responsibility of the new government in Belgrade, adding that the recognition would be harmful for Serbia. “We cannot accept that someone works against the interests of Serbia,” Bogdanović said and added that following this round of elections, new negotiations with UNMIK will take place to determine the optimal way of addressing the issue of local governance in Kosovo.
Full Article: Serbs divided over Kosovo local elections | New Europe.