"Nobody's asking Serbia to recognize Kosovo"

(Beta, file)

"Nobody's asking Serbia to recognize Kosovo"

BELGRADE -- Serbian Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic told reporters in Belgrade on Tuesday that "nobody is asking Serbia to recognize Kosovo."

Commenting on media reports that Germany delivered "11 conditions" that Serbia must fulfill to open chapters in the EU membership negotiations, the prime minister "underlined that it doesn't say anywhere Serbia must recognize Kosovo."

"Serbia is looking for the most rational solutions to all questions, without for a second jeopardizing its territorial integrity, and at the same time preserving stability in the region," he said.

According to Tanjug, Vucic "did not wish to comment on media reports about the 11 conditions" and "underlined only that Serbia will not recognize Kosovo."

Ethnic Albanians in the province in early 2008 unilaterally declared independence - a proclamation Serbia considers a violation of its territorial integrity and sovereignty.

"I cannot comment on that and I cannot comment on what is acceptable to us. I don't think that some would like to force us to trample on ourselves in order to prove they are stronger - instead I think they want Serbia as an EU member," he said.

Vucic added that "some EU members" wish the financial control chapter (32) to be tied to chapter 35 ("other issues and Kosovo") - "which would mean undertaking some more unilateral or joint activities with the Pristina government on the issue of Kosovo."

"This is no revelation. We have known this before and we have been doing our job. It's up to others to make the assessment," he told reporters at the Palace of Serbia.

Vucic added that citizens from Kosovo "must have an additional paper, and...

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