Jan 22, 2016

Kosova: Pristina to Continue Dialogue with Belgrade

Kosova’s Deputy Minister for Local Government, Mr Bajram Gecaj, revealed on 20 January 2016 that his government intends to continue dialogue with Serbia. Although the authorities have not disclosed further details about when this meeting would take place and at what level, Mr Gecaj’s declaration is a positive sign for a diplomatic normalization of the situation.

Below is an article by b92.net 

Bajram Gecaj told Radio Free Europe's Albanian language edition that he "neither denied nor confirmed" whether Prime Minister Isa Mustafa would attend the meeting with Serbian Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic in Brussels.

"It has not been confirmed whether there will be a meeting at the end of the month. But dialogue will be continued. We'll see when the meeting will take place and it could be at different levels. Therefore, it is not certain that the meeting of prime ministers will take place at the end of this month. So far a meeting at the highest level has not been confirmed, " said Gjecaj. 

According to the report "this, after all, reject the speculation in some Kosovo media that Mustafa allegedly will not participate in the next meeting in Brussels until Kosovo is granted visa liberalization (by the EU)." 

Namely, Gecaj said that "Pristina's relations with Brussels are built on the basis of trust rather than conditionality." 

"The issue of visa regime liberalization is very significant and the Kosovo prime minister attaches great importance to it, as does the entire government. We believe it is extremely important to give citizens of Kosovo the same opportunity as to all other European citizens. However, we will not develop relations of conditionality with the EU, but those of partnership," said Gjecaj. 

It was reported on Monday that Gecaj told Pristina-based broadcaster RTV21 that Mustafa "remains consistent to his statement he would not travel abroad, or to the meetings in Brussels in the framework of the dialogue on normalization of relations until citizens of Kosovo are able to move without (EU) visas."