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EU trying to take over Serbia-Kosovo negotiations from U.S.

Berlin and Paris want to serve as mediators between Belgrade and Pristina

Submitted by InfoBrics, authored by Paul Antonopoulos, independent geopolitical analyst…

French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian and German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas in a joint statement on the weekend said that EU-led dialogue between Serbia and Kosovo must restart as soon as possible and that shortcuts and quick fixes are excluded from the European plan towards a final deal. The sudden weekend request from France and Germany for the immediate continuation of dialogue between Kosovo and Serbia, under the leadership of the EU, was euphorically welcomed in Pristina, because, unlike the U.S. one, it offers no dead line for a solution. The EU does not want a repeat of the Dayton Agreement for Kosovo as it has been a catastrophic failure for Bosnia and the EU was only a passive observer when Bosnia was divided.

For Belgrade, there are several elements that it has to face. First of all, the battle between the EU and the U.S. for supremacy in leading the Kosovo process is underway. In that, the joint letter from Paris and Berlin requests dialogue between Belgrade and Pristina to begin as soon as possible but for the dialogue to be patient, while Washington is also on a diplomatic offensive with the aim to end the process as soon as possible.

The EU has been silent on this issue for a long while, which the U.S. used to activate and engage in dialogue in the absence of European influence. Knowing the traditional position of Washington on the Kosovo issue, Belgrade should prevent the U.S. from taking a lead position in any negotiations because they have always been on the side of a Kosovo independent of Serbia.

With Berlin and Paris, as the leading members of the EU, showing greater interest in resolving the issue between Serbia and Kosovo, they are showing their return to the process in a demonstration of their increased influence in the region. It is important for the Europeans to indicate in some way that they are still interested in having the main influence in the dialogue. If we observe this from Serbia’s side, this could be in its favour as the EU still has member states that do not recognize an independent Kosovo and will defend this position.

However, Pristina is also looking forward to European mediation in the process and it is not only due to the fact that they are beginning to give up on the U.S., but for the fact the Europeans are not putting pressure for the negotiations to end by a certain time frame. The U.S. wants a quick solution, while Germany and France, although they are looking for an efficient dialogue, are more inclined to a slower pace for reaching a solution and do not set deadlines. This suits Pristina at the moment because of the political crisis and disagreements between Albanian leaders on this issue. So, they need to put their own house in order before being pressured to making agreements with Serbia.

One of Belgrade’s obligations in the accession negotiations with the EU is a final solution to the Kosovo issue under the auspices of the EU. This goal of EU accession however is mostly at the behest of the Serbian political class and does not necessarily reflect the opinions of the people. None-the-less, Berlin and Paris want to say that they will not be just observers as the EU continually seeks ways to become more sovereign and independent of U.S. foreign policy.

Although Germany is rigid, it will not want a change of borders in Kosovo. However, the EU is not only Germany, as much as it wishes it to be. Europe is to formally provide a service and to serve as a mediator between Belgrade and Pristina in order to reach a legally binding agreement between Belgrade and Pristina. It would be completely normal for Europe to solve this problem, because it is on the European continent and not the North American one. However, the fact is that at this moment we actually have two negotiating parties that provide various potential solutions. Therefore, there is no doubt that the EU is seeking to take over negotiations between Serbia and Kosovo from the U.S., and it appears that both parties are happy for this to occur.

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Caveat Emptor
Caveat Emptor
May 27, 2020

I’m sorry to say to look forward to the day when the states bordering Mexico acquire a majority Mexican population including vast numbers of illegals and move to secede by starting a civil war and using Mexican drug cartels as the means to accomplish it …….as a fully direct analog to the Kosovo secession. But who will intervene in their support ……the EU? The RF? Mexico?

Might be decades away or maybe never, short of an economic implosion – but wouldn’t it be the ultimate what goes around comes around irony?

Lou
Lou
May 28, 2020

Grenell is a Trump appointed caricature of a diplomat who made statements that caused Germans to see the US not as a friend but an angry adversary which is losing grip on everything around it. Now as far as keeping to a timetable is concerned, well these are just words as they had “deadlines” last year from May then July , September then December and nothing happened. I don’t see how the Albanians want the EU more than the US since the US is far more favorable to them. Now what does the EU have as leverage over Serbia, which… Read more »

Peter
Peter
May 28, 2020

Serbia should not even discuss this matter until a formal apology and economic compensation Is offered by both the EU and the USA (NATO) for the illegal bombing and theft of their land under false pretenses (Kumanovo agreement called for peacekeeping not secession). International law is on Serbia’s side. What the Kosovo Albanians and the US and some EU members want to do is to legalize an illegal act. Therefore, Serbia holds all the cards. The only thing they have offered Serbia so far is potential EU membership, which is in fact a rotten carrot on a very long stick.… Read more »

Olivia Kroth
May 28, 2020

EU trying but not succeeding. EU is a misfortunate creature.

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