Serbia, Kosovo reach pact on implementing peace plan, EU’s Borrell says

Kosovo and Serbia reached an agreement late Saturday on implementing an EU-backed deal to normalize relations, EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell said.

“We have a deal,” Borrell tweeted late Saturday after 12 hours of talks by Serbian President Aleksandar Vučić, Kosovo Prime Minister Albin Kurti and EU officials in Ohrid, North Macedonia.

“Kosovo and Serbia have agreed on the implementation annex of the agreement on the path to normalization of relations,” Borrell said. “The parties have fully committed to honor all articles of the agreement and implement their respective obligations expediently and in good faith.”

The two leaders held separate meetings with Borrell before a three-way session. Both sides had agreed to the underlying deal in Brussels last month.

Despite Borrell’s announcement, Serbia’s Vučić said the parties have not agreed on all points, Reuters reported. “Despite differences, we had decent conversation,” Vučić was quoted as telling a press conference.

Kosovo’s Kurti said: “This is a de facto recognition between Kosovo and Serbia,” according to the Reuters report. 

Kosovo and Serbia have been in EU-backed talks for nearly a decade since Kosovo declared independence in 2008. Serbia still regards Kosovo as a breakaway state and flare-ups between the two have fed worries about a return to conflict.

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