Statement by High Representative Josep Borrell on the situation in northern Kosovo

I continue to follow closely the situation in northern Kosovo. Serbia and Kosovo must unconditionally escalate the situation on the ground, immediately withdrawing special police units and dismantling roadblocks. Any further provocation or unilateral and uncoordinated actions are unacceptable.

Kosovo and Serbia must find solutions to alleviate the situation and agree on the way forward. The EU will actively support these efforts. The leaders of Kosovo and Serbia are fully responsible for any risk to the security and well-being of local communities in both Kosovo and Serbia. I emphasized this in my calls with President Vuçiç and Prime Minister Kurti this week.

EU-facilitated dialogue continues to be the only platform to address and resolve all outstanding issues between the Parties, including those related to freedom of movement and license plates, and I strongly urge Kosovo and Serbia to use it. The two Chief Negotiators coming to Brussels in the following days is the first positive step. It is crucial that they come up with a mandate to discuss the way forward and find sustainable solutions that are in the interest of the citizens.

We reiterate that we expect Kosovo and Serbia to return to creating a favorable environment for reconciliation, regional stability and good cooperation for their citizens. This is essential to reaching a comprehensive and legally binding agreement on the normalization of their relationship, which is necessary for both to move forward on their respective European paths.

I am in close contact with the NATO Secretary General, whom I thank for the excellent cooperation between KFOR and EULEX. KFOR plays a key role in supporting regional stability in the Western Balkans./ ibna

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