Petritsch: Changes of Serbia-Kosovo border not a threat

NEWS 11.08.2018 13:11
Source: Wikimedia/Manfred Werner - Tsui

Some minor, "cosmetic" changes of the border between Serbia and Kosovo would not have a negative impact on the region, the quarrel between Pristina and Belgrade would not spill over to other countries and the conflict between the two would be solved, former Bosnia administrator, Wolfgang Petritsch, said.

Kosovo and Serbia are currently trying to find a way out of a territorial dispute in an EU-facilitated dialogue.

Kosovo’s north is home to Serb-majority municipalities.  

“Should it even come to that, we are talking about smaller cosmetic corrections that would impact a small number of villages in the area of Bujanovac and Kosovska Mitrovica,” the former EU Special Representative and former High Representative in Bosnia said.  

Although the Austrian diplomat said he does not think this would cause any spillover, he proposed that the EU, UN and OSCE facilitate a Declaration, “so that nobody else – not in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia, Croatia, Slovenia and Albania, would be granted the right to strike similar agreements.”

The changes in Serbia and Kosovo would not change the ethnic composition of any country, he said.

“There is a ‘new realism’ in place in the Balkans… So, let us support the Taci-Vucic agreement,” Petritsch wrote as a response to an article by US political analyst Daniel Serwer, who was against any border corrections, arguing it could impact the Balkans negatively.  

“I have for a long time been advocating, as a principle, the acceptance of the existing borders, and I still do. But, in rare cases, one must think twice,” he wrote.