Kosovo, Serbia Clash in Brussels Over Serb-Majority Municipality Body

Kosovo's Prime Minister Albin Kurti on Tuesday refused to accept a draft statute for the establishment of an Association of Serb-Majority Municipalities to represent Serbs' interests in Kosovo, claiming it would establish an entity like Bosnia and Herzegovina's Serb-dominated Republika Srpska, whose leaders have repeatedly challenged the legitimacy of their state.

"I fundamentally disagree with the draft. It represents the desire for a Republika Srpska in Kosovo," Kurti wrote on Twitter after meeting with Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic and EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs Josep Borrell in Brussels.

Kurti also published what he called his "vision" for the Association of Serb-Majority Municipalities, a body that was agreed upon by Kosovo and Serbia as part of normalisation talks back in 2013 but has so far not been implemented.

Kurti's proposal says the association should recognise Kosovo's statehood and be a "non-territorial project".

Serbian president Aleksandar Vucic said after Tuesday's meeting that he was "very worried" about the situation.

"On the key issue, the issue of the formation of the Association of Serbian Municipalities, it is clear that Pristina does not want to fulfil its obligation from ten years ago," Vucic told media in Brussels.

Borrell said after the meeting that the draft statute was "not the final draft, it is a starting point".

He acknowledged that "as expected, the views of the parties [involved] are far apart on the nature of this Association/Community".

"But, even if they disagreed, they agreed to start negotiations on the statute of this Association/Community in the near future, taking this first draft as a starting point for the discussions," he added.


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