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UN Special Envoy Calls for Kosovo Splitting From Serbia

Recommendation Dangerous for Global Security, Counter-terrorism, and Human Rights Efforts

 

Contact: Kevin Fahey, Institute on Religion and Public Policy, 202-835-8760, Fahey@religionandpolicy.org

 

WASHINGTON, Feb. 2 /Christian Newswire/ -- United Nations envoy, former Finnish President Martti Ahtisaari, today released his proposal for the future of Kosovo.  The proposal, as one anonymous Western diplomat stated, "amounts to 'independence, subject to international supervision.'" The major points of the plan include:

 

  • No reference to Serbian sovereignty or independence for Kosovo;

 

  • Blocking Kosovo from joining Albania, or having its Serb areas split off and join Serbia;

 

  • Giving Kosovo right to use national symbols including flag and anthem;

 

  • Giving Kosovo right to join international organizations such as UN and IMF;

 

  • Creating international envoy mandated by UN and EU with power to intervene in government;

 

  • Retaining NATO and EU forces in military and policing roles;

 

  • Protecting non-Albanian minority with guaranteed roles in government, police and civil service;

 

  • Protecting Serbian Orthodox Church sites and Serbian language.

 

"The complete ignorance of Serbia's sovereignty in the proposed plan and the imposition of such a future independence without a negotiated process demonstrate that a new concept of sovereignty – based on capitulation to acts of violence and the ghetto-ization of minority populations – is the new model," commented Institute on Religion and Public Policy President Joseph K. Grieboski.  While the British foreign office believes that a solution 'should be acceptable to the great majority of the people of Kosovo, and I think that speaks for itself,' it does not take into consideration the rights of the minority who have found themselves as the victims of violence and persecution since the UN began its mandate."

 

Publication of the Kosovo plan was postponed from the end of 2006 to prevent it from influencing a parliamentary election in Serbia. The election failed to produce a clear majority and Serbia now looks headed for lengthy coalition talks just as the fateful plan for its province is launched. Serbia's main party leaders all reject independence but are divided on how to resist an international solution.

 

"The expected independence of Kosovo will guarantee a new European state that does not support fundamental rights, that thrives on corruption and illegal activity, and will only serve to engender independence movements in Chechnya, central Europe, and elsewhere.  This is not and will not be an isolated affair: the graduated independence of Kosovo, a problem for Europe in and of itself, will lead to countless other security and human rights problems across the globe," concluded Mr. Grieboski.