DiCarlo and Lehne back swift resolution of Kosovo status, warn against violence
"We think that after seven years of UN administration, the people of Kosovo have a right to clarify their future," US Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Rosemary DiCarlo said in Pristina Monday. However, she and EU envoy Stefan Lehne also warned that any outbreaks of violence would only serve to derail the process.
By Blerta Foniqi-Kabashi for Southeast European Times in Pristina
US Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Rosemary DiCarlo and the EU's envoy for the Kosovo status talks, Stefan Lehne, arrived in Pristina on Monday (December 4th). Both the United States and the EU support determining Kosovo's status as soon as possible, they stressed.
"We think that after seven years of UN administration, the people of Kosovo have a right to clarify their future," DiCarlo said.
But they also warned that any outbreak of violence could derail the status process. "You have to show maturity and commitment to help the international community, in partnership with you, to bring this process to its essential conclusion," Lehne said, adding that any unilateral action would be counterproductive.
DiCarlo echoed those remarks. Violence would harm the aspirations of the people of Kosovo awaiting completion of the process to determine their future, she emphasised. She said she came to Pristina to support Ahtisaari's efforts regarding the Kosovo status settlement. "The United States of America strongly supports Ahtisaari and his comprehensive proposal, which will be presented to the parties following the elections in Serbia that will take place on January 21st," DiCarlo said.
While in Kosovo, she paid a visit to the Peja Patriarchy, where she held talks with religious leaders about the future of the Serb Orthodox cultural and religious heritage in Kosovo.
She and Lehne also were scheduled to meet with Kosovo Prime Minister Agim Ceku, Parliament Speaker Kole Berisha and leaders of the Serb and other minority communities.
Meanwhile, Ahtisaari vowed at the weekend that there would be no further delays in putting forward his blueprint for Kosovo.
"Immediately after the Serbian elections, I will present my proposal for Kosovo," he said in Berlin Saturday. "Only clear status will let Kosovo become part of international financial institutions, in order to improve its economic situation, which is a big problem."