21 November 2006

Solution Should Not Grant Kosovo Rights Normally Given to Sovereign States

Russia insists on all-party agreed solution to Kosovo
www.chinaview.cn 2006-11-04 04:25:32
BRUSSELS, Nov. 3 (Xinhua) -- Any decision on Kosovo's final status must be acceptable to all parties, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Friday, casting aside an imposed solution.
"It can only be a compromise, it has to be a decision which is acceptable to all parties," Lavrov told a news conference in Brussels after talks with Finnish Foreign Minister Erkki Tuomioja, representing the European Union presidency.
Lavrov warned that a decision made "from the top down" would "just simply fall apart".
The UN-sponsored talks on Kosovo's final status were launched at the end of 2005. Although the deadline was set at the end of this year, the negotiations are dragging on, raising the likelihood that a solution will be imposed.
The UN mediator for Kosovo Martti Ahtisaari has recently produced a draft proposal, which reportedly grants Kosovo certain rights normally enjoyed by sovereign states.
Lavrov said the proposal could be submitted to all parties with a view to future talks, but not necessarily as an ultimatum on any party.
Although technically still part of Serbia, Kosovo has been run by the UN and NATO since a NATO bombing campaign in 1999.